The past two weeks I spent in a country retreat on a mountain outside Toowoomba. The wildlife here have a fairly safe environment on the back of the mountain. The property is very prone to storms; the crackle and roll of thunder and lightning give quiet spectacular shows, as does the sunsets over the plains below.
The first day we arrived there were a mob of pretty faced or whiptail wallabies on the hillside overlooking the property; one other wallaby bounded among the group with a reddish color across its shoulders, probably a red necked wallaby. Need another sighting to be sure. Alas, I didn’t have my camera handy, can you believe? If one gets up very early in the morning, about 4.am I’m told, guaranteed to see the Wallabies feeding. Not an early riser I watched and waited in the evenings.
Late yesterday evening sighted the whiptailed wallaby in a family group on the rocky slope; they blend in so well with the dry vegetation it is really hard to see them at first. The male or buck, was a particular large and handsome fellow. One young wallaby was still trying to come across the slope to join the group so the Buck moved towards us and stood up to his full height, eyeing us suspiciously until the young wallaby had safely joined the family.
About the Wallaby:
The wallaby is a marsupial or pouched mammal. The young when born are very tiny (2 cm) and undeveloped. They find their way into their mother’s pouch, attach themselves to a teat which swells inside their mouth and holds them firm, where they suckle and are safely hidden while they continue to grow. The joey usually stays in the pouch for a period of nine months.
A young wallaby is also called a joey, the same as the offspring of a Kangaroo. The Wallaby, though smaller, is of the same family as the kangaroo and similar in habits and habitat. It is a herbivore, the bulk of their diet grasses and plants. The preferred habitat of the wallaby is the woodlands and grazing on hillside slopes.
Late today for only the second time a red-necked wallaby appeared at the drinking trough, with a young joey. The red-necked wallaby seem to be smaller than the whiptailed wallaby, and are very pretty with their rusty colored fur across neck and shoulders, lovely big soft ears.
The weather has been almost heatwave conditions with temperatures of 36 and 37 degrees Celsius for a few days. Apparently not a lot of water about for the wallabies as the mob can be seen regularly drinking from the trough. Pale-headed Rosella’s, magpies, top-knot pigeons and other birds have also becoming regular visitors.
The wallabies are now used to me aiming my camera at them. Found a young wallaby drinking out of the fish pond. Water is scarce in this heat; will keep the hose running into the water trough from now on, as find the trough empty most mornings.
Has taken a while but finally got a photo of the little joey peering out of its mother’s pouch, mostly can only see a paw hanging out, today they were very obliging, and managed a family photo in front of the fish pond. Notice they stand with their ears pricked and are ready to take flight at the first sign of a threat. The little joey so very beautiful and cute. Later the young wallaby came out of the pouch to drink at the trough under the Doe’s watchful eyes.
Another fabulous sunset, and before we left a big storm dropped 52 ml across the mountain. There is sure to be more water in the rock pools on the hillside for the wallaby and other wildlife, so may not see as much of them for a while.
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