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Quaker by conviction, mother by default, Celticst through love, Christ follower because I once was lost but now am found...

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Sunday Surprise.

A wallaby? Well it's like a kangaroo but smaller.

I have heard all my life what a terror to our native wildlife cats are. Domestic or feral they are hunters & I have seen an athletic female take a bird in flight. Issi knows he's not allowed to hunt but he's a cat ~ though on the rare occassions he's actually caught something he's never seemed to know quite what to do with it because in cat communities it's the ladies who do the hunting.

I've kept cats all my life so I know first hand what excellent hunters cats are & ours have always been brought in at night & aren't let out in the morning until the sun's well up. Saves a lot of heartache all round.

The rub is I don't own a dog & for a good reason. Dogs are totally responsible for the lack of macropods on the islands. They hunted & terrorised the kangaroo & wallaby population until it fled & swam the channels to the big eastern island that is mostly National Park. Even so we have always seen the occassional small swamp wallaby. Very pretty. A little browny grey wallaby with a sweet face & dark points.

We usually see them down near the waterhole at the farm where there is plenty of scrub but the guy who now owns the property has several very large & aggressive dogs & no wallabies. Very occassionaly, at dawn or dusk, we will spot one grazing along the foreshore at the bottom of our property. A macropod needs quite a large grazing area & as we become more urbanised there are fewer & fewer suitable parcels of land so I was more than a little astonished to have Dearest bail me up at the bottom of the stairs with a finger to his lips. Opening our front door very gently he pointed out a gorgeous rufus coated wallaby the exact firey shade of a fox's coat. Dark tail, dark points.

He moved about our yard casually & we got a really good look at him gazing round our fire pit before he took fright & shot off down the hill through the braken. Issi was looking quite bewildered & rather spooked. Big hoppity things don't usually wander through our yard like that.


Molytail said...

Oh cool! That would have been pretty awesome to see! :-)

The HoJo's said...

aaah we saw baby roos in the wild today, nice :o) none near tous townies though :o( not keen to meet a boomer though


Happy Elf Mom (Christine) said...

Ohhhh... what a shame about the dogs!! I'm glad you got to see the hoppities though. :]

Britwife said...

That is so cool! I love seeing the differences of nature between our two continents. I would be tickled pink to see that in "real life".

Diane Shiffer said...

wow! how nifty is that? i'd love to see a little red wallaby☺

seekingmyLord said...

Always interesting when nature disregards the boundaries, isn't it? Coyotes moved into our area. Wallabies are cuter. Wanna trade?

Sandra said...

Oh my. How wonderful!