As you will notice when reading my blogs, we love to go search for wildlife during our holidays. Kangaroo Island turned out to be one of the best places to do so. To give you an idea of what you may encounter, I’ve listed the main ones below.
Of course, how could it not be… One thing’s for sure: it’s pretty clear where the Island’s got its name from. There is even no need to “search”, you encounter them all the time. We’re not complaining though – it’s an amazingly weird animal and every time we saw one, we were still thrilled. As a side note: apparently the KI kangaroo is smaller than the species on the mainland.
The kangaroo’s little brother was numerously presented as well. When you have seen both the kangaroo and the wallaby, the difference is pretty obvious – but in the beginning we didn’t have clue, to be honest. Wallabies are typically seen when dusk is starting to set in.
Another amazing inhabitant of Kangaroo Island is of course the koala. It’s so fluffy I’m gonna die!!! Initially we were looking high in the tree tops of the bushes in the areas known for koalas. But it turned out we could find them a lot easier than that. We were lucky enough to see one with her young in a tree just on the side of the road. The young was learning how to grab some leafs for the smaller twigs, by crawling over its mother’s back. Amazing! But afterwards, on the Heritage Walk (in Flinders Chase National Park) that we did around 4pm in the afternoon, there was a male sitting at less than 3 meters from us (no, I’m not exaggerating – the picture below is evidence!). Needless to say we took way too many pictures of him. And then, all of a sudden, he’s making this pig-like loud noise. They do that for marking their territory, we learned. Unforgettable!
I didn’t know this one before we went there. It looks like a larger hedgehog, but has this longer thin muzzle that it’s using to look for ants and termites. Again – cute!!! We were lucky enough to spot one during the Platypus Waterholes hike that we started at around 9am, when Flinders Chase NP opened. But it’s really not easy to distinguish from all the twigs and leafs on the ground. We saw a second one when we did the night tour at Hanson Bay Wildlife Sanctuary. It was not too dark yet, so were able to get a better picture of it.
Goanna is a kind of big lizard. It’s a pretty ancient species and is so cool to watch. When it has spotted you (and of course it does way before you spot it), it stops moving. But if you’re patient enough, it starts moving again and that’s the best part of it. We saw two of them during our stay, one in the bush and one on a parking lot.
There was a time when we weren’t really interested in birds, but over time we have been starting to look at the different bird species more and more. In Belgium we don’t see a lot of colourful birds, so we think they’re pretty boring – but when making our trips we recognized that there are actually a lot of pretty birds out there. And the pink and white cockatoo that we saw in KI certainly is one of those. They move in huge flocks, so when they fly up it’s a blur of white and pink, which is really nice to see. And we think they look pretty slick with their head feathers pulled back nice and tight
As you will probably know, opossums are nocturnal, so we only saw them when we did the night tour at Hanson Bay Wildlife Sanctuary. During the walk we saw two of them looking down at us from the treetops (I know, the picture below doesn’t stand out in quality, but that’s the best we could get it: to not annoy the animals too much, the guides pull their flash lights back from the animals after a second or two). After the tour however, we saw a lot more of them… on the road. After a 1,5 hour car ride back to our cabin, a lot of them were crossing our path. Luckily we were driving 60 km per hour (max), because they just keep running right in front of the car! Cute: yes, smart: I don’t think so! Instead of going left or right (you know, maybe trying to get out of the car’s way?), they just kept going straight on, turning their heads at us like saying: “what the hell man, this is my territory”. We were very relieved when we made it back safe and sound, without hitting anything alive (because besides the possums also quite a few kangaroos and wallabies were coming out of all directions).