It’s common knowledge that kangaroos are found in Australia (although smaller related species such as tree kangaroos also live in New Guinea). Most people are also aware that, as marsupials, kangaroos have a pouch in which their babies live and grow. Yet, the true wonder of the way mama kangaroos give birth and begin to rear their young begs belief – and makes most other mammals look downright boring! Prepare for cuteness overload as we take a look at the facts behind this amazing process while marveling at some aww-inspiring images of baby kangaroos (known as ‘joeys’) in their mothers’ pouches.
Although kangaroos and wallabies are distinct species, the name kangaroo is sometimes used to refer to other species in the super-family called macropods. This includes wallabies, pademelons, wallaroos, forest wallabies and tree kangaroos.
Marsupials give birth to young that are much less developed than those of other mammals. Most of the early development occurs in the mother’s pouch rather than in the womb. For a kangaroo, gestation is only 31 to 36 days; that’s the equivalent of a human baby being born after just seven weeks!