There are so many animals that have gone extinct, and most of them are just seen in pictures these days. However, there are animals that we thought are already gone but are actually just in hiding in places that humans can’t locate.
One of them is the Wondiwoi Tree Kangaroo.
The Wondiwoi Tree Kangaroo is so uncommon we thought that it vanished for about a century and was thought to be already extinct. These are tropical marsupials that are close relatives of ground-dwelling kangaroos and wallabies. These medium-sized kangaroos have muscled lower arms to pull themselves up the trunks of trees and move around the branches using an odd combination of climbing and bouncing. In spite of being unpopular to the world, they are a shockingly diverse group. According to reports, there are 17 species and sub-species of Wondiwoi Tree Kangaroo; two in the furthest North of Australia and the rest of the enormous island of New Guinea.
An amateur botanist named Michael Smith, 47, from the United Kingdom has driven an expedition into close an impenetrable bamboo woodlands which are about 5,000 feet high in the remote Wondiwoi Mountains of West Papua, Indonesia, just to find the Wondiwoi Tree Kangaroo. Michael led this expedition to locate the uncommon species. Smith trained as a biologist at university and he now works for a medical communications company. He spends trekking trips in remote parts of Pakistan, Kurdistan, and Indonesia to chase for rare orchids, rhododendrons, and tulips.
He started the endeavor after finding out about the mysterious creature while scouring the West Papuan mountains for rhododendrons in 2017. This simply demonstrates that even if this tree kangaroo still exists is just astonishing. It’s such a remote and spot to get to that nobody thought would be discovered. With the guide of four Papuan porters, a local hunter who is acting as their guide, and Norman Terok, an understudy at the University of Papua in Manokwari, Smith trekked into the wilderness on July 23, emerging a week later with good news!
This tree kangaroo was presently spotted, yet in addition, photographed for the first time! It had been spotted there just once before by Western researchers, in 1928. The unique monkey-like kangaroo clambers through the trees of the montane woods of New Guinea. Since then, the Wondiwoi tree kangaroo had not been collected, seen, or reported since that first sighting. Mark Eldridge from the Australian Museum in Sydney says, “It is a standout amongst the most inadequately known warm-blooded creatures on the planet.”
Many tree kangaroos in New Guinea are declining because of overhunting, logging, palm oil plantations, and mining, so it’s refreshing to have a positive story for a change. According to Roger Martin, we give a living space to these creatures and leave them alone this will just be the time that they will get on fine. He adds, “The reason they stayed obscure for so long is most likely because of that grisly bamboo woods.”
Knowing that this animal still exists provides a great opportunity to collect more information since many of us still know nothing about these Wondiwoi Tree Kangaroos. Eldridge also says that we need to make it a priority to ensure its survival. Smith hopes that this amazing find will prompt more security for a national park includes the Wondiwoi Mountains because there is a proposition for a gold mine in the recreation center that would represent a danger to the zone’s one of a kind untamed life.