Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Before we moved to Australia, I believed that kangaroos would be hopping around everywhere.

They don’t. They don’t hang out in the city center. They aren’t lounging in the city parks.

In fact, we didn’t cross paths with kangaroos in the wild for a few months. But when we finally did, the experience was truly captivating. In the small town of Halls Gap, located in the Grampians National Park, about 3 hours northwest of Melbourne, kangaroos DO hop around everywhere! They DO hang out on street corners and in the parks!
Suburbia problems in Australia!
Do you see the joey's head popping out of the pouch?
We watched kangaroos as they slowly munched on the grass in front of businesses and people’s homes. They also littered the grass with lots of natural fertilizer. They eyed us with suspicion as we tried to get closer to get a better photo.

Sometimes, the kangaroos would stop in the middle of eating and suddenly, seemingly effortlessly, bound away down the street. We always saw them in clusters together which is known as a mob – a mob of kangaroos. I have to wander if more kangaroos than people lived in this small town. We saw dozens of kangaroos on Heath Street as we walked into the city center for breakfast or dinner.

Caught in the act of feeding from its mother.
The best place for kangaroo spotting in Halls Gap was right behind our motel, the Kookaburra Motor Lodge. The family-run motel faces a large open field, so all we had to do was open our patio door, pull up a chair, grab a glass of wine and watch the kangaroos in utter fascination. I was amazed to watch these nimble creatures bound through the air with the forested-mountains as the scenic backdrop.

THIS is the Australia that I wanted to see!
There’s something about viewing kangaroos in the wild that is simply stunning, especially if you’ve never seen them before. I assume for Australians that seeing kangaroos gets a bit tiresome like seeing deer in the U.S. But we had a good time, and I took more than 200 photos of kangaroos, which I edited down to 100.

Generally, the best times to view kangaroos are either at dawn or dusk. However, in Halls Gap, we saw kangaroos at all times of the day. Late afternoon or early evening provided the best light to photograph the kangaroos.
Here are a few other Australian critters we saw from our motel’s patio:
Sulphur-crested cockatoo – I couldn’t resist feeding it a rice cracker.
Honeyeater, or possibly a wattlebird, which is in the same family. They use their beaks to drink nectar out of flowering trees.
A blue fairy wren darts around on the patio.
If you love the outdoors and want to see kangaroos up-close, I’d highly recommend a weekend trip to visit the Grampians.

Would you like to see kangaroos up-close too?

My Traveling Joys

Tagged: , , , ,


Unknown said...

Joy, this is all too cute to be true, gorgeous pictures! Now I want a pet kangaroo! Well, I guess he wouldn't be too happy in Warsaw- it's just a secret (not anymore!) dream of mine and let's keep it this way ;) Australia seems to be an amazing place to experience wildlife and it's ironic that what we consider so stunning, exotic and rare can be a nightmare to the locals, I've never actually thought of it before. Thank you for sharing your wonderful adventure, as usual, you put a huge smile on my face, exactly what I needed today :) Dziękuję <3

Mal x

Carrie @ Season It Already! said...

We had to go to a Wildlife Park to see the kangaroos when I was in Australia. There was no way I was going to travel all that way only to miss them. We got to feed them, too. One of the happiest moments on one of my favorite days in Oz! I know they are domesticated in those cases and that they shouldn't be approached in the wild.

Still, on another day, we went to see the penguins come ashore on Phillips Island. We went on an exclusive tour were instead of watching the parade from the grandstand, a van transported us through the National Park to a set of stairs, where we would access the beach and then walk to the spot where we would park our seats and wait for the penguins.

Before we reached those stairs to the beach, a wallaby hopped across the road in front of the van. I remember my draw dropping and thinking, "Is this real life?" :-) They are magical to those of us who don't see such things in the wild, no?

Joy said...

@Mal, dziękuję! Unfortunately the small kangaroos don't stay small for long! However, wallabies do and are like minature versions of roos. :) Hope you get to Australia some day to see this all in person!

Joy said...

Hi Carrie, it's still a pretty magic experience to see and feed a kangaroo at the wildlife park. We've been to 2 nearby sanctuaries as well where you could feed the roos and wallabies. Sooo cute!

And lucky you for your special Phillip Island experience. Unfortunately, we were with masses of people in the bleachers section. We did get a 2nd row seat on the cold sand though. :)

Pinay Flying High said...

I had a smile fixated on my face as I read through the post and I just realized how silly I must've looked like after reading it was still smiling. Lol. They're sooo cute! I definitely would want to see a kangaroo mob!

Mark said...

Having been to Hall's Gap a few times myself I can concur. It is indeed a great place to see kangeroos.