Kangaroo kills Australian in rare fatal attack: NPR


A grsy kangaroo hops down a hill in the Wombeyan Karst Conservation Reserve near Taralga, southwest of Sydney, Australia, in August 2016. A 77-year-old man died after a rare kangaroo attack in south-west Australia, police said on Tuesday. .

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A grsy kangaroo hops down a hill in the Wombeyan Karst Conservation Reserve near Taralga, southwest of Sydney, Australia, in August 2016. A 77-year-old man died after a rare kangaroo attack in south-west Australia, police said on Tuesday. .

Rob Griffith/AP

PERTH, Australia – A man who kept a wild kangaroo as a pet was killed by the animal in southwestern Australia, police said on Tuesday. It would be the first fatal attack by a kangaroo in Australia since 1936.

A relative found the 77-year-old with ‘serious injuries’ on his property on Sunday in the semi-rural area of ​​Redmond, 400 kilometers (250 miles) southeast of Australia’s state capital -Western, Perth.

It is believed he had been attacked earlier in the day by the kangaroo, which police shot dead because it was preventing paramedics from reaching the injured man, police said.

“The kangaroo posed an ongoing threat to emergency responders,” the statement said.

The man died at the scene. The police prepare a report for a coroner who will record an official cause of death.

Police believe the victim kept the wild kangaroo as a pet.


Gray kangaroos feed on grass near Canberra, Australia, in March 2008. Kangaroos don’t do well in captivity and can become aggressive, says Tanya Irwin, macropod caretaker at Native Animal Rescue in Perth , in Australia.

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Gray kangaroos feed on grass near Canberra, Australia, in March 2008. Kangaroos don’t do well in captivity and can become aggressive, says Tanya Irwin, macropod caretaker at Native Animal Rescue in Perth , in Australia.

Mark Graham/AP

There are legal restrictions on keeping native Australian wildlife as pets, but the police media office said on Tuesday it had no information to release as to whether the victim had a permit.

Tanya Irwin, who cares for macropods at Native Animal Rescue in Perth, said authorities rarely issue permits to keep kangaroos in Western Australia.

“It looks like it was an adult male and they get quite aggressive and they don’t do well in captivity,” Irwin said.

“We don’t know what the situation was; if he was in pain or why he was being held in captivity and unfortunately…he’s not a cute animal, he’s a wild animal,” Irwin added.

Irwin said his rescue center is still rehabilitating native animals with the goal of getting them back into the wild, especially kangaroos.

“You need a special permit to be able to do this. I don’t think they really give one very often unless you are a wildlife center with trained people who know what they are doing” , she said.

Western gray kangaroos are common in southwestern Australia. They can weigh up to 54 kilograms (119 pounds) and stand 1.3 meters (4 feet 3 inches) tall.

Males can be aggressive and fight people with the same techniques they use against each other. They use their short upper limbs to grapple with their opponent, use their muscular tails to support their body weight, and then lash out with their powerful clawed hind legs.

In 1936, 38-year-old William Cruickshank died in a hospital in Hillston, New South Wales, on Australia’s east coast, months after being attacked by a kangaroo.

Cruickshank suffered serious head injuries, including a broken jaw, while trying to save his two dogs from a large kangaroo, The Sydney Morning Herald newspaper reported at the time.

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