Three kangaroo facts to amaze your friends with:
- They are the largest marsupial, with the big red species standing over 2 metres
- Kangaroos belong to the animal family Macropus, meaning “big foot.”
- They are like Superman and can leap a tall building in a single bound (well, perhaps not a building, but they can jump 9 metres reaching speeds of 48 km/hr)
It is commonly said that kangaroos can’t walk (or hop in their case) backwards. Further to this, it also has led to the story that this was why the kangaroo and emu (who also has been accused with the inability to walk backwards) were chosen to represent the emblems for Australia’s coat of arms. The story continues, with the initial 1908 writing on the coat of arms being ‘Advance Australia’. It is rumoured that this was the reason for choosing a kangaroo and emu – they were symbolic of our nation moving forwards, due to their inability to move backwards.
Well, I’ll let you determine the truth of both stories. For my bit of tinsey, winsey, highly scientific research into the area of ‘can kangaroos and emus walk backwards’ I set my daughters onto the task. They recently visited the zoo and diligently interviewed (more like an interrogation) the zoo keepers on their real life sightings. The conclusion was that kangaroos can’t move backwards, but emus can.