Kangaroos use tail as fifth leg says study

2014-07-04 08:21

(Shutterstock)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Sydney - The bounciest animal of all, the kangaroo uses its tail as a fifth leg while walking. That's the surprising finding of Canadian, Australian and US researchers, who say the animal's tail helps it maintain balance as it grazes for food.

According to scientists, the kangaroo uses its tail as a fifth leg. While best known for hopping, the marsupial spends most of its time walking as it grazes for food.

In tests conducted inside this force-measuring Plexiglas box, the researchers, from Canada, Australia and the US found that the marsupial's tail gives as much forward force as its front and hind legs combined.

In fact, sensors showed its tail, supported by more than 20 vertebrae, did as much mechanical work as a human leg.

It's believed the kangaroo is the only animal that uses its tail as a leg, although it's a versatile limb, becoming a powerful counterweight when the kangaroo takes flight.

Watch how the researchers conducted a bit of their experiment with the Kangaroos.

Read more on:    us  |  canada  |  australia  |  research  |  animals

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
3 comments
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

 
/News

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
Traffic
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.