|Gould , 1841|
The rabbit kangaroos ( Lagorchestes ) are a genus of marsupials from the kangaroo family (Macropodidae). They bear their name because their size and movements are reminiscent of rabbits . The genus includes four species, two of which are already extinct.
Rabbit kangaroos reach a head body length of 31 to 47 centimeters, to which a tail 25 to 49 centimeters long is added. Their weight is 0.8 to 4.5 kilograms. Their fur is long and dense, it is gray-brown or reddish-brown in color. As with most kangaroos, the hind legs are significantly longer and stronger than the front legs, the tail is long and muscular. The hairless snout and short neck are characteristic of these animals.
Distribution and way of life
Hare kangaroos were originally spread over large parts of Australia , today they still live in the north of the continent and on offshore islands. They inhabit different habitats such as open forest areas, but also bush and grasslands.
These animals are nocturnal and rest during the day in a depression in the ground in the shade of a tree or hidden in thick vegetation. At night they go in search of food, mainly eating grass and herbs. They live mainly solitary.
- The Central Australian Rabbit Kangaroo ( Lagorchestes asomatus ) is only known from Aboriginal reports and from a skull found in central Australia in 1932, it is considered extinct.
- The eyeglass rabbit kangaroo ( Lagorchestes conspicillatus ) is characterized by reddish spots around the eyes. It is the most widespread species today and is found throughout northern Australia.
- The shaggy rabbit kangaroo ( Lagorchestes hirsutus ) is extinct on the mainland, but still lives on two small islands off the coast of Western Australia.
- The eastern rabbit kangaroo ( Lagorchestes leporides ) used to inhabit the southeast of Australia. This species has not been seen since around 1890.
The banded rabbit kangaroo ( Lagostrophus fasciatus ) is only distantly related to the rabbit kangaroo despite the external similarities and is classified in its own genus, Lagostrophus .
- Ronald M. Nowak: Walker's Mammals of the World. 6th edition. Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore 1999, ISBN 0-8018-5789-9 .