Why Do Lions Roar? Some Interesting InformationMay 2, 2022
Can Dogs Eat Spicy Food? Any Risks or Benefits?May 2, 2022
Kangaroos are amazing creatures. They have a fourth toe that is really helpful when hopping over long distances. They are also marsupials, which means that they have a pouch on their abdomen that they can use to carry their young. The thick fur on a kangaroo’s body helps the animal during extreme temperatures, being a great insulator.
But when it comes to muscle mass, you will notice that kangaroos are very buff, almost looking like gym-goers. Why is that?
Kangaroos actually have muscular bodies due to several reasons. One of the more obvious reasons why male kangaroos have more muscles is because this will make them more attractive to females. Kangaroos also need strong and muscular legs because they are very large hopping animals, so their legs need to be powerful enough to push all that weight. The genetic aspect should also be taken into account. These animals have a genetic predisposition towards big muscles. Their muscles account for around 50% of their total weight.
You’d usually see kangaroos at the Zoo or, if you’re Australian, you might even see them on the side of the road. They might not look all that threatening and will usually stand still, but they are really buff and strong. Especially the red kangaroos.
Below I`ll dig a little deeper into kangaroos and their characteristics.
So why are kangaroos so buff?
You cannot be impressed by the muscle build of kangaroos. The more muscular a kangaroo will be, the more dominant it will be in its natural habitat and its social group. This is something you notice in the case of humans as well most of the time.
But how would a kangaroo get buff and how much would it help the animal?
The red kangaroo is the largest species in the family of kangaroos and at the same time the biggest marsupial worldwide. Two very powerful hind legs helped by two strong forelimbs, in combination with a very muscular tail, enable them to move in many different ways.
When they stand upright, they will use their tail as a third leg, for balance most of the time. You might not believe this but their tail is in fact just as strong as both of their legs combined.
These super aerobic animals have large hearts as well as high levels of muscle mitochondria, which are essential for such a muscular body. Similar to animals like horses, dogs, and antelope.
The thing that sets these animals apart in the animal kingdom is the total number of mitochondria in organs and skeletal muscles.
The red kangaroo is known to have over 50% of the total body mass made entirely of muscles. An even more interesting aspect is that out of all those muscles, most of them are situated in the pelvis and hind legs area.
According to recent research, the greater oxidative capacity their muscles have, the more athletic their species will be. This is especially visible when you compare them with animals of similar body mass that are more inactive.
As you might expect, cattle and goats have smaller hearts than dogs, horses, and kangaroos. Their mitochondria amounts are also considerably higher. This also means that animals known to move more will also have a more considerable muscle mass than species that like to move less and slower.
When you look at a kangaroo, the first thing you will notice is its very muscular legs. But why are they like that?
Of course, the thing that will keep this animal in your mind will be its bipedal hopping, a weird method of locomotion as opposed to the usual quadrupedal walking of other mammals.
You should know that kangaroos are considered the only large animal that will use as a main means of travel hopping. They have flexible tendons that make the legs even stronger. These will be great at storing most of the energy when jumping.
You can even compare them with compression strings. The spring is storing a lot of force when it is condensing, by the weight that is pressing down on it. All of that force will be released when the spring decondenses. The kangaroo’s feet work pretty much in the same way. When they touch the ground, the tendons will squeeze and store all that energy that the kangaroo will then use to rebound.
The hopping of a kangaroo is nothing like the human jump. It will require a lot less energy and less effort for basically bigger jumps. You might not believe this, but kangaroos use almost no energy on breathing while jumping.
Also, their tail plays an important role, serving as a balancing tool, launching the kangaroo into each leap. Strong muscles are needed to support their large, heavy bodies.
The combination of muscles, large feet, and its tail, allow kangaroos to jump up to 25 feet in one leap. And also travel as fast as 43 mph over short distances.
The mating rights
Animals will have very different mating rituals and techniques in the wild, most of the time used by the males to attract females.
Male kangaroos, for example, use a very unique way of convincing a female to mate with them. They would fight with other males in a way similar to boxing. While around females, they would also flex their muscles to get their attention.
This means that a kangaroo’s muscular body will be very when trying to attract a female. Their competition will be notable, considering that kangaroos live in big groups, of close to ten specimens, called a mob. Their exact location and their actual species will dictate the size of the mob.
Throughout the mating season, just one male, usually the most muscular one, will be dominant in a mob during the mating season.
Males will start fighting each other when females will give them signs that they are in their reproduction period. These fights aren’t taken lightly. They are very intense and can sometimes last quite a while. It’s easily understandable that most fights will be won by pure strength and size, so the bigger, more muscular specimen will win the female’s attention.
Kangaroos are so buff that you might mistake them for bodybuilders. Their muscles enable them to hop around with ease, but also to take on fights. They will fight for dominance in a mob, where usually just one male will have the privilege of mating with the females. This is, of course, the bigger, more muscular one, that wins the most fights.