Banded Hare-wallaby

Lagostrophus fasciatus

Click to view a larger image. Click to view a larger image. mammal mammal

Museum specimen featured in the Wild exhibition
Source: Museum Victoria

Banded Hare-wallaby
Image: Jean-Paul Fererro
Source: Ardea

Type: mammal

Banded Hare-wallaby Banded Hare-wallaby
Image: Jean-Paul Fererro
Source: Ardea

Conservation Status

Secure Vulnerable Endangered Extinct  ]

The major threats to this species are introduced predators such as foxes and cats, and competitors such as goats and rabbits. Ongoing extreme drought in Australia has also reduced numbers. Furthermore, their island habitats are so small and isolated that fire or disease could easily wipe out a whole population.

WHAT THEY EAT

herbivore

Banded Hare-wallabies are herbivores.

They feed on grasses, fruits and other vegetation.

HOW BIG THEY ARE

Banded Hare-wallaby relative size depiction as described below

Size relative to a sparrow and a cat.

Weight:
1.3–2.1 kg
Length:
body 40–45 cm, tail 35–40 cm

Amazing Banded Hare-wallabies

Banded Hare-wallabies are the only remaining members of a lineage called short-faced kangaroos. This group had about 12 species, some of which were huge megafauna – up to 200 kg in weight and three metres tall. Yet Banded Hare-Wallabies are smaller than a domestic cat.

These wallabies live in social groups beneath dense shrubs. They are active mostly at night, travelling through runs and tunnels they create in the shrubbery.

Once widespread across south-western Australia and as far east as the Murray Basin, Banded Hare-wallabies are now restricted to just three west-coast islands. They are a relatively long-lived species (up to six years) but have suffered intense predation from introduced foxes and cats. They are also susceptible to drought, despite obtaining most of their water from their food, since drought kills the plants and shrubs they live among and feed upon.

Female Banded Hare-Wallabies start breeding at one or two years old. They carry their single offspring in their pouch for six months after birth. In times of drought, these wallabies conserve their resources and stop breeding.

A recovery plan for this species is in place; the islands are protected habitat, and captive breeding with releases back into the wild may help increase numbers to healthy levels.

Did You Know?

Banded Hare-wallabies

  • are the only living member of the short-faced kangaroos
  • were first described in 1699 as ‘a sort of raccoon’ because of their dark stripes
  • were last found on the mainland in 1906

WHERE THEY LIVE

Banded Hare-wallaby distribution map

Found on three islands the coast of Western Australia: Bernier, Dorre and Faure Islands. Banded Hare-Wallabies live within dense shrubbery.

OTHER ANIMALS

Other animals from Australasia

Southern CassowaryPlatypusBennett's Tree KangarooThylacineSouthern Brown Kiwi

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