Tree Kangaroo Conservation Program

Tree Kangaroo Conservation Program

Unlike their kangaroo relatives, tree kangaroos spend nearly all their lives in trees. Well-adapted for life in the forest canopy these small arboreal marsupials are built for climbing! With powerful limbs, long-gripping claws and a long tail for balance they can easily maneuver from branch to branch. Despite their impressive abilities, they spend 60% of their time sleeping.

Although there are 14 species of tree kangaroos, our zoo is home to two Matschie’s tree kangaroos – Morobe and La Roo. Topping out around 22 pounds, this mighty little mammal is recognizable by its deep red and cream coloring.  This thick fur works to insulate them against damp weather and act as camouflage protection against predators.

Native to the mountainous rainforests of Papua New Guinea this a critically endangered species needs our help. Your Roger Williams Park Zoo has long supported wildlife and habitat conservation programs to help this threatened species survive including a close partnership with the AZA Tree Kangaroo Species Survival Plan (SSP) breeding program and the Tree Kangaroo Conservation Program.

More recently, thanks to a match by a very generous donor, our Zoo has made a $30K commitment to the Port Moresby Nature Park project to benefit wild tree kangaroos. This park is Papua New Guinea’s only Wildlife Rescue, Rehabilitation, Breeding and Research Centre. A safe haven for wildlife, the Nature Park is a leader in wildlife education, conservation and ex-situ research. Support from our Zoo, generous donors, and other partner organizations allows the Nature Park to continue to rehabilitate wildlife for release, provide a home and life care for wildlife that are unable to return to the wild, and support research opportunities and breeding programs.

Through your continued support, you are an ally in saving and protecting this species and wildlife worldwide.

Did You Know?

Deforestation and hunting are primary threats to tree kangaroos. Habitat loss due to expanding agriculture continues to push this species to the brink of extinction. Fortunately, through collaborative efforts, zoos and conservation programs worldwide are working to protect them.