Photos of Wild animals of Outback Australia

 

Wild animals of Outback Australia

Outback Australia is a wonderland of wildlife, most of it harmless and quite loveable, with a few notable exceptions! Best known of course are kangaroos and wallabies, Australia's marsupials who keep their young in a pouch. The Koala, a tree dwelling marsupial (and not a bear!) lives in the temperate regions and spends all its life in eucalyptus trees, munching its leaves. It seems cuddly, but isn't really; if annoyed it may give you a nasty scratch. The large kangaroo too, can be quite a fighter when cornered. The possum is a nocturnal marsupial and widespread around Australia. Unique to Australia and parts of New Guinea are the monotreme or egg-laying mammals like the platypus and echidna.

There are large flightless bird, like the cassowary and the emu; the latter emits a weird rumbling sound and is capable of running very fast. In the wetlands in the north are pelicans, brolgas, flocks of white cockatoos and the "Jesus Bird", so called because it seems to walk on water (but really, of course, on water lily pads).

There are many types of reptiles: the Goanna (Monitor lizard) is very important in Aboriginal mythology and as food, many types of snakes: the Carpet Snake, a python, is non-poisonous but there are many that are: the Desert Death Adder lives up to its name as one of the most poisonous on earth. There are other animals that are best avoided and probably the Estuarine or Saltwater Crocodile has the worst reputation: in Darwin museum is the huge skeleton of "Sweetheart", a monster crocodile that used to attack motor boats. But these large reptiles, once mercilessly hunted, are now protected and should be respected as belonging there. They are now regularly caught in Darwin harbour and released in the wild, or end up in the crocodile farm. They are also a tourist attraction: from the boat "Adelaide River Queen" they are fed meat and have to jump for it, to the delight of tourists. The Freshwater or Johnson Crocodile, in contrast, is quite harmless.

When the whites started to explore the vast interior, they introduced camels, complete with Afghan camel drivers, in the late 19th century. Later released, these camels now form large herds in the Centre and are used in tourist safaris. They are becoming a problem in that their numbers in some places are too large and a burden on the environment. Donkeys are sometimes seen in remote regions too, as are horses and especially domestic cats gone wild, considered the worst pest in the bush as they tend to kill large amounts of native marsupials and birds. The water buffalo, once introduced from Indonesia, is now considered a pest as it degrades the environment; brought under control and herded into cattle pens, they now appear on the menu in Darwin restaurants.

And don't forget the teeming wildlife of our coasts, especially Queensland's Great Barrier Reef, considered the largest living structure in the world.


Emu behind fence
Emu behind fence

Waterfowl
Waterfowl

Koala
Koala

Goanna, Healesville
Goanna, Healesville

Kangaroos
Kangaroos

Small Wallaby
Small Wallaby

Wallabies
Wallabies

Thorny Devil
Thorny Devil

Wild donkeys
Wild donkeys

Tamed brumbies
Tamed brumbies

Water Buffalo
Water Buffalo

Large spider
Large spider

Tropical fish
Tropical fish

Wild Buffaloes
Wild Buffaloes

Underwater Observatory
Underwater Observatory

Kangaroo with joey
Kangaroo with joey

Emu
Emu

Pelican
Pelican

An emu
An emu

Caught tortoise
Caught tortoise

Monitor lizard
Monitor lizard

Asian Water Buffalo
Asian Water Buffalo

Baby possum
Baby possum

Jesus Bird
"Jesus Bird"

Brushtail possum
Brushtail possum

Fish and coral
Fish and coral

Red Kangaroo Joey
Red Kangaroo Joey

Freshwater Crocodile
Freshwater Crocodile

Estuarine crocodile
Estuarine crocodile

Crocodile Farm
Crocodile Farm

Jumping Crocodile
Jumping Crocodile

Jumping for food
Jumping for food

Wild crocodile
Wild crocodile

At Camel farm
At Camel farm

Petting a kangaroo
Petting a kangaroo

Scorpion
Scorpion

Bearded Dragons
Bearded Dragons

Desert Death Adder
Desert Death Adder

Camel
Camel

Carpet Snake
Carpet Snake

Wallaby, Port Douglas
Wallaby, Port Douglas

Grey Kangaroo
Grey Kangaroo

White cockatoos
White cockatoos

Boy with brolga
Boy with brolga

Eagle portrait
Eagle portrait

Small wallaby
Small wallaby

Brolga portrait
Brolga portrait

Large spider
Large spider

Wallaby with joey
Wallaby with joey

Emu portrait
Emu portrait

Dingo
Dingo

Wallaby in Healesville
Wallaby in Healesville

Brolga
Brolga

Echidna
Echidna

Monitor lizard
Monitor lizard

Emu in Healesville
Emu in Healesville

Young kangaroo
Young kangaroo

Floating pelican
Floating pelican

Koala
Koala

Feeding the pelicans
Feeding the pelicans

Saltwater croc
Saltwater croc

Crocodile portrait
Crocodile portrait

Duck
Duck

Lizard on a log
Lizard on a log

Kangaroos in the bush
Kangaroos in the bush

Back to Menu at Top of the Page


Share on Tumblr