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Rufous Bettong (Rufous Rat-Kangaroo)

Aepyprymnus rufescens


Small kangaroo-type marsupial, greyish/brown grizzled fur, lighter belly fur, eyes rimmed with fine red/brown fur, dark eyes, small round ears with slight point, tiny front legs/forearms with long claws used for digging up fungi, roots, tubers and other vegetation. Hind legs similar to larger kangaroos and able to jump with same movement, long tail almost hairless. Sleeps in grass depression in the ground near logs or under tussocks. Lives alone or in small family groups and sometimes congragates in larger groups around good food resource sites.


Found throughout eastern Australia (woodland and forest) although not as common - predation by feral pests, human activity especially land clearing and road fatalities have taken a toll. This one in open woodland area of my backyard..


I particularly like the eye shine in the second two photos, this is the male Bettong. In the morning the ground is scattered with scratched up dirt and small holes where these animals have been foraging. They also have some tiny young in the pouches - which I am hoping to photograph!

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kdpicturemaker 5 years ago

Yes they are cute, but they sound like the devil is standing next to you hissing and growling in the darkness! Have not managed to get a good photo of the baby out of the pouch yet, they are all very wary. Baby is unbelievably small, coloured and with fur same as parents but very spindly and would fit easily into the palm of your hand.

Tom15 5 years ago

What a cute little marsupial!

Spotted by

New South Wales, Australia

Lat: -29.59, Long: 152.78

Spotted on Dec 21, 2013
Submitted on Dec 22, 2013

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