Australian Surfer Saves Kangaroo From Shark-Infested Waters

Published May 15, 2009

| London Times

A man who went out for a morning jog ended up rescuing a kangaroo from shark-infested waters.

Neil McCallum was with his son at Kirra Beach, Queensland, when a small kangaroo jumped into the ocean. “We were totally dumbfounded,” he said. Soon the kangaroo was caught in a riptide.

“I realised if we didn't do something, that little roo would either drown or become lunch for some big hungry fish,” he said.

So he decided to act fast. He ran back to the family home, situated further up Kirra Beach, grabbed his surfboard and headed back to rescue the roo — but not before waking his wife and asking her to grab the video camera.

“I tried to get the kangaroo on my board a few times but he slipped off, so then I herded it over to a sand bar and he hopped through the water,” McCallum, 48, said.

He hauled it on to the board and took it to a sandbar. The kangaroo “bounded back off down the beach — but not before he looked back at me ... as if to say ‘Thanks for that, mate,'” McCallum said.

Kangaroo expert Pat O'Brien, from the Wildlife Protection Association of Australia, said the fact that kangaroos can swim is a well-kept secret.

He said during the recent floods in Queensland a kangaroo was found by fishermen swimming seven miles offshore after being swept out to sea by floodwaters.

“They are actually very good swimmers and even though people might not see it, they seem to go swimming quite often,” O'Brien said.

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