Born the size of a jellybean in July 2016, the male joey named ‘Haroli, is just starting to become noticeable to the public. This successful birth follows the arrival of ‘Mian’, the first tree kangaroo joey born at the Zoo in 36 years which made global news headlines.
Australian Fauna Keeper, Kerry Pickles, said: “To have a second birth within such a short time frame is a wonderful contribution to the World Zoo Association global breeding program and very exciting for us at Perth Zoo.”
“Haroli and Mian are half-brothers, both fathered by ‘Huli’ who came to Perth Zoo from Queensland in 2015 after being identified as the best genetic match for the breeding program.”
“Mother, ‘Doba’ is a first time mum and is very cautious with her joey who has been keeping his head out of the pouch more frequently,” said Kerry.
“Doba is also beginning to spend a lot of time on the larger logs and platforms, as she prepares for Haroli to take his first tentative steps outside of her protective pouch.”
“Tree Kangaroos remain in their mother’s pouches for approximately six to eight months before testing out their wobbly arboreal legs.”
Perth Zoo keepers anticipate that because of the summer weather, Haroli may leave his mother’s pouch sooner than Mian did.
Native to Papua New Guinea, Goodfellow’s Tree Kangaroos are so endangered that zoos around the world have been working together to coordinate breeding with the aim of reversing their decline.
“Young Haroli is only the 16th male tree kangaroo to be born as part of the global program,” said Kerry.
“Their genetics are vitally important once they reach sexual maturity. Mian is coming of age, so there are already plans in progress for him to go to the UK to be paired with a female and help provide an insurance against extinction for his wild counterparts.”
Perth Zoo’s work to save tree kangaroos from extinction extends beyond the Zoo’s borders.
The Zoo has a long running partnership with the Tenkile Conservation Alliance which works in the mountains of Papua New Guinea to safeguard tree kangaroos in the wild. The Zoo’s community fundraising has also assisted with wildlife surveys to get proper population data on the animals, as well as education and community development programs.