A kangaroo is an animal. It is a kind of mammal. It belongs to the genus macropus. It is common in Australia and can also be found on nearby islands. Kangaroos hop to move around. They cannot walk backwards but they can hop or jump as far as about three times their own height.
Kangaroos are marsupials because they carry their young in special pouch on their bodies. Baby kangaroos are called joeys.
Because it is mostly found in Australia, Australians see it as a national symbol.
There are four types of kangaroos:
The Red Kangaroo (Macropus rufus) is the largest marsupial anywhere in the world. The Red Kangaroo lives in the arid and semi-arid centre of Australia. A large male can be 2 metres (6 ft 7 in) tall and weigh 90 kg (200 lb).
The Eastern Grey Kangaroo (Macropus giganteus) is less well-known than the red (outside of Australia), but the most often seen, as its range covers the fertile eastern part of the continent.
The Western Grey Kangaroo (Macropus fuliginosus) is slightly smaller again at about 54 kg (119 lb) for a large male. It is found in the south part of Western Australia, South Australia near the coast, and the Darling River basin.
The Antilopine Kangaroo (Macropus antilopinus) is similar to the Eastern and Western Greys. Like them, it lives on the grassy plains and woodlands. It lives in large groups.