August 17, 2012
How does a kangaroo clean its pouch of joey dirt?
FunFact: Up until I was about 11 my nickname was Joey Dirt.
But I digress.
The nonpareil C. Claiborne Ray, in her weekly "Q & A" feature in the New York Times Science section, addressed the question of joey dirt and its removal from a mother kangaroo's pouch, as follows.
Q. How does a female kangaroo rid itself of the dirt that its joey brings into its pouch as it jumps in and out?
A. "A female kangaroo cleans her pouch by licking it out," said Colleen McCann, curator of mammals with the Wildlife Conservation Society at the Bronx Zoo.
"She is able to push her long snout in to clean it effectively, removing the urine and feces of the young joey by using her tongue," Dr. McCann said. "She works her tongue around a young joey that is still attached to the teat, and older joeys are temporarily ejected while she cleans the pouch."
Drawing up top (which accompanied the feature) by Victoria Roberts.
August 17, 2012 at 12:01 PM | Permalink
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Wow. That's mother love!
Posted by: tamra | Aug 17, 2012 2:30:01 PM
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