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Meet the rare tree-dwelling kangaroo that's arrived in Chester Zoo

A breed of kangaroo at serious risk of extinction has arrived in Chester for the first time.

Sangria, a Goodfellow’s tree kangaroo, has been given a home at a new exhibit at Chester Zoo.

Sangria was born in San Diego Zoo 15 years ago. Credit: Chester Zoo

Her arrival is part of a global conservation breeding programme for the species.

Zoo conservationists plan to introduce the 15-year-old to a male in the hope that the pair will breed.

The Goodfellow’s tree kangaroo has curved claws to help with grip while climbing. Credit: Chester Zoo

What is a Goodfellow’s tree kangaroo?

  • a tree-dwelling marsupial
  • native to the mountainous rainforests of Papua New Guinea
  • can jump distances of up to 9m
  • much smaller than the common kangaroo
  • under threat from hunting and habitat destruction
It's hoped Sangria will breed. Credit: Chester Zoo

Mike Jordan, Collections Director at Chester Zoo, said:“Many people associate kangaroos with Australia but the Goodfellow’s tree kangaroo actually comes from Papua New Guinea. There are no primates on the island and possibly the last thing you’d think would evolve to live in trees is a kangaroo, but that’s exactly where they are found.

“They are very well adapted to live in forests with a long tail to give balance when jumping from branch to branch, curved claws and rubbery soles to help with grip when climbing and strong, stocky arms to help them grasp tree trunks.

Sadly though, these remarkably charismatic and highly interesting animals are teetering on the brink of extinction.

We really hope that Sangria, in her new home, will help us to create some much needed awareness of the species and its plight in the wild

– Mike Jordan, Chester Zoo