02 June 2008

Black-gloved Wallaby - Macropus irma

Click to enlarge image
Black-gloved Wallaby footprint
Western Grey Kangaroo footprint

Black-gloved Wallaby - Macropus irma
(also known as the Western Brush Wallaby)

Sorry I have no photos of this animal as it is extremely shy and remains in dense vegetation during the day. When encountered it is usually a loud crash in nearby vegetation and a bluey grey shape sprinting at great speed with head down and tail trailing out behind. So all you see is this low hopping animal whose whole body is parallel to the ground and seldom leaping higher than the vegetation. Its movement is very distinctive as the Grey Kangaroos keep their heads up and hop up and down, rather than the more horizontal motion of this marsupial.

Like their common name suggests, it has black paws and a long black tipped tail. The face of mature animals have a white facial stripe running from the mouth to the ears. It is a little smaller than the female Western Grey Kangaroo and stands over a metre in height. Very difficult to judge their numbers, although much less than the grey kangaroo. It is more likely that you would see their easily recognisable tracks rather than the animal itself. The photos above show my interpretation of the tracks of both macropods travelling in a straight line. To read more about this animal click here: http://www.murray.wa.gov.au/community/dwellingupvisitorcentre/documents/mammals/brushwallaby