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THE CHATTER BOX

 
  
  
  The Chatter Box : Blathering On
  
  
  
 
Australian wildlife (II)...tamed? by bIG bLOGGER on 12 May 2009 5:20pm
 
The London TIMES ran a curious story yesterday,claiming that some English home-owners with large plots of land (turf,etc.) have started using wallabies to keep the grass down.

It said various animals have been tried out as grass-cutters,for example horses,donkeys,sheep,goats,even geese,but wallabies do a far better job in a much shorter time (and charge less for their services also...!)

David Gard has 3 red-necked male wallabies at his family home in Tunbridge Wells,Kent and they are buying 2 females in the hope they may breed. He said that initially his neighbours thought he was "mad as a hatter". He also has a 7-foot fence surrounding the property lest the wallabies try to make a bound for freedom.

The delightful lawn-mowing marsupials are also in increasing demand in Suffolk and Norfolk and on farms with a sizeable paddock. They are gregarious animals,but they don't like dogs and are harmless to humans.
It's not clear where they learnt to mow lawns or what they do with the grass (perhaps they store it in their pouches until they get to the end of the lawn and then empty the grass in a sack?) but they love grass and leaves and will also eat cabbages and even bananas. Wow.
 
Re: Australian wildlife (II)...tamed? by kazzzz on 13 May 2009 12:03am
 
Good grief!
You're not allowed to own wallabies here! You can buy them? People have them around on properties here but they're wild, not as pets. Well not a purchased pet, anyway.
 
Re: Australian wildlife (II)...tamed? by mrsthing on 13 May 2009 1:31pm
 
Can't have them in the US, either--at least, not in CT. Especially after that tragic incident with the chimpanzee, state officials are clamping down on exotic pets.

7 foot fence around my entire property? AUGH! Claustrophobia! I'd go nuts!

Couldn't you train them with an Invisible Fence and those collars?
 
Re: Australian wildlife (II)...tamed? by Rox on 13 May 2009 3:53pm
 
Ohhh - poor little Wallabies, I can't imagine a Wallaby hopping around in Kent !!! They must be freezing and as for feeding them cabbages and bananas, it makes me shudder:( This LT story makes me feel sad. The newly built houses in my town, are encroaching on our local Kangaroo's territory. Most evenings, I watch anywhere from between 10-100 Kangeroo's from my kitchen window. They make their first appearance on the crest of a hill. From the distance that separates my kitchen to their grazing, what I see, resembles a line of warriors preparing for battle. Then as the evening progress's and the sky softens into azure blue transending to pink, the Kangeroos are descending, grazing all the way down to my boundary fence.
BAH HUMBUG "delighful lawn mowing marsupials" indeed........and Kangeroos and Wallabies aren't actually harmless to humans.....
 
Re: Australian wildlife (II)...tamed? by bIG bLOGGER on 13 May 2009 4:33pm
 
Steady on,Rox!
Well,obviously there isn't much of a direct comparison between a wallaby and a mechanical lawn mower,so even if they ate the grass,the lawn would still look rather chewed up and uneven.Using rabbits would be even worse,because although they can get through a lot of grass,they have a nasty habit of burrowing into the earth.

The TIMES's story highlighted how 'cute' wallabies are and quite harmless to humans;
Rox--are you saying you know otherwise? ..Or have you recently had a 'run-in' with a wallaby or something and you are still smarting from the experience?
I understand you are originally from England and you now live in Perth,Western Australia,so what is the local percentage of wallabies to kangaroos? And how do Australians get their lawns mowed?

mrsthing:I looked up the 'chimp accident' story in the New Haven (Conn.) "sunjournal.com" -and it said no one thought the pet chimp (called 'Travis')was dangerous,and they still didn't know why it had suddenly turned on this woman visitor,because it had seen her before.
I know Michael Jackson kept a 'pet' chimp for many years called 'Bubbles',but although Michael has lost his face,I don't think it was the result of a sudden chimp attack.
 
Re: Australian wildlife (II)...tamed? by peripatetically on 13 May 2009 5:23pm
 
Chimps are indeed very dangerous. I was never aware of just how dangerous they can be, but after visiting the Umatilla reserve for wild animals, we learned from the caretakers that they can be, and often are, very vicious creatures. Two of the keepers said they would never enter an enclosure with them. We witnessed some very wild behavior while we were there. The facility is a place where wild animals from circuses, zoos and from other situations and places where they no longer are wanted or can live during their last years of life. They are treated very humanely and live peacefully with respect and dignity.
 
Re: Australian wildlife (II)...tamed? by mrsthing on 14 May 2009 10:01pm
 
Travis had been in commercials and was quite the celebrity chimp, and yes, they're still trying to figure out what made him turn on this woman. It's very sad, she was severely injured. Chimps are very strong, and when they attack they literally rip their victims apart.
 
Re: Australian wildlife (II)...tamed? by peripatetically on 14 May 2009 10:47pm
 
I believe it, Judy. I really really do!!!!!
 



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