Watch a Fearless Kangaroo Square Up and Throw Hands Against a Pair of Huge Emus

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Written by Sharon Parry

Updated: November 10, 2023

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Are Marsupials Mammals
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Emus are the largest bird species in Australia and, as we see here, can be full of character! In the clip, we get to see what happens when a group of emus come face to face with a spirited kangaroo and they really don’t know what to make of each other!

Where Do Emus Usually Live?

Emus are flightless omnivorous birds that are constantly on the move looking for food and water. They do have wings, but they are certainly not powerful enough to lift that huge body off the ground. These birds can weigh up to 130 pounds and some stand over six feet tall.

There are several subspecies of emus and they are distributed all across Australia apart from Tasmania. In general, wild emus avoid the more densely populated areas and this is certainly true for Victoria. To find food and water, they can move large distances in one day. Their habitats are extremely varied, anything from open arid plains to tropical woodlands although they tend to avoid the very thickly forested areas.

close up of an emus face

Emus can be docile, cautious, or curious!

Emus can also be farmed for meat, fat, and leather and this has led to some interesting studies into their behavior. There are even emu farms in the US. Researchers have found that these birds can be friendly, docile, cautious, panicky, and flighty. They are also curious which may explain their interest in the kangaroo!

Is This Normal Behavior for a Kangaroo?

Most Vicious Animals

Kangaroos can be aggressive if approached, animals usually keep their distance to avoid getting kicked or scratched.

The kangaroo can match the emu when it comes to unusual looks. They are bipedal (walk on two legs) and are also harvested – for their skin and meat. Thanks to their very large hind legs and feet, they can jump up to 10 feet in the air. There are several different types of kangaroo that evolved from tree-dwelling marsupials.

As social animals, they prefer to congregate in groups called herds, mobs, or troops. The kangaroo in this clip adopts a typical ‘boxing’ stance. When they box, it actually involves a lot of circling, grappling, and kicking as well as throwing punches. This looked more like the play fighting that young kangaroos indulge in to hone their skills rather than a true confrontation.


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About the Author

Dr Sharon Parry is a writer at A-Z animals where her primary focus is on dogs, animal behavior, and research. Sharon holds a PhD from Leeds University, UK which she earned in 1998 and has been working as a science writer for the last 15 years. A resident of Wales, UK, Sharon loves taking care of her spaniel named Dexter and hiking around coastlines and mountains.

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