Is it a bird, Is it a plane… No it’s a Royal Albatross!
There are many features that makes the Royal Albatross so special. The Royal Albatross is regularly mixed up with a Pelican and Seagull. It is an easy mistake. But really they couldn't be any more different. Albatrosses have a wingspan of up to 2-3m and has big black and white feather all over its body. They have a pale cream tipped beak and beady black eyes. Also they have flippered feet that give them the appearance of “sea legs” on land. Though they have big wings that help them soar to up to 115 kmph, Albatrosses are able to tuck them up tightly when on the ground. The Royal Albatross is the biggest sea bird known in the world and has a diet of squid and fish.
The list of unique characteristics of The Royal Albatross is endless. One of them include how they can drink sea water. Humans and most other animals can not. The Albatross has a small gland at the top of its head that filters the salt back out through its nostril and back into the sea, leaving it with only fresh water. An adult bird covers a distance of 190,000kms a year! They are very loyal animals staying with the same mate for nearly their whole lives. The oldest Albatross ever recorded was called “Grandma” who reached the age of 62.
A life cycle of a Royal Albatross begins with an egg being laid. That egg is incubated for about 75-82 days. When it is hatched it gets guarded closely for a month, and then left so the parents get get food. The parent takes turns at feeding the chick. Once it is old enough , it takes it first flight and leaves the nest. It flies 9,131km to the shores of Chile and then flies around Antarctica for 5 year without touching land. Now it is matured into an adult, the Albatross returns to its birth site and finds a mate.
There are 2 species of the Royal Albatross in the world: The northern and southern. The 2 main breeding sites are located in the Chatham Islands and near Otepoti (Dunedin, New Zealand). They sit in the cliffs near the sea and make their nests out of straw and grass.
Wobbly on land, majestic in the air, the Royal Albatross is an amazing bird that is on New Zealands shores
When you think of animals of Australia, what comes to mind?
The Kangaroo is a symbolic animal in the Australian culture and is recognised on many different logos throughout Australia, including the national rugby team.
There are 48 species in the kangaroo family, including wallabies ( a smaller type of kangaroo). There are 4 common species found such as the red, eastern grey, western and antilopine kangaroos. These four types have a range of different coat colours including red/brown, light and dark grey and straight brown. Even though they have a variation in this aspect, all kangaroos still have a very powerful hind legs used to hop and kick, short arms and an oversized tail. These characteristics differ between each animal. Male kangaroos are referred to as boomers, bucks or jacks. Females are called flyers or jills and baby kangaroos are named as joeys. A joey ( young kangaroo) are a small as a grain of rice to as big as a bee when they are born. They climb into the mother's pouch and stay there for weeks or even months, until they are big enough to venture out on their own. Male kangaroos range from 3.25- 5.25 feet when fully grown. Kangaroo is currently a very popular dark meat and can be found in many australian restaurants.
Kangaroos are located throughout Australia in the forest landscapes, woodlands, long grassy plains and dry savannas. With a range of population between species, it is estimated that there are between 1,774,000- 8,978,000 so it is not a problem to spot one on an afternoon drive, although most kangaroos stay in mobs, dominated by the male.
Kangaroos are grazing herbivores, which means they only eat plants. They love to eat grass, flowers, leaves, moss and insects on a day to day routine. Although it may not appear to be, kangaroos have very similar eating habits to a cow, such as the regurgitation process and what they consume Kangaroos can also last long periods without drinking water.
The kangaroo is an interesting and indigenous animal to the australian culture , with many different species of kangaroo , you can never miss them, if passing by the australian outback. They are even the national logo.