CAR­ROT-AD­DICTED KAN­GA­ROOS HOP­PING MAD AT TOURIST

The Gulf Today - Panorama - - Have You Heard? -

Kan­ga­roos are one of Aus­tralia’s big­gest tourist draws, but visi­tors to one park are get­ting more than they bar­gained for. Tourists in Lake Mac­quarie, a two-hour train ride from Syd­ney, are ig­nor­ing warn­ings and feed­ing car­rots to kan­ga­roos who be­come ag­gres­sive at the sight of their favourite sug­ary snack, a tour oper­a­tor said. Each week thou­sands of peo­ple lock to see the kan­ga­roos on grassy slopes en­ticed by travel blogs promis­ing “adorable wild kan­ga­roos” that are “tame enough to get close to and take pho­tos with.” Car­rots in hand, the tourists ap­proach the kan­ga­roos. It doesn’t al­ways end well. A photo posted by a tour oper­a­tor on Face­book showed a kan­ga­roo leap­ing up to kick a tourist with its pow­er­ful legs. Other pho­tos showed a woman with a scratched face and a man with a bloody gouge in his stom­ach.

Michelle Shaw, a nu­tri­tion­ist at Syd­ney’s Taronga Zoo, said the kan­ga­roos had likely be­come ad­dicted to the car­rots, a high-sugar food that is bad for the mar­su­pi­als. A kan­ga­roo’s nat­u­ral diet is mostly grass, so the sugar in car­rots can make it hard to ef­fec­tively ab­sorb nu­tri­ents.

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