Zoo Miami officials released a video Friday of the Matchie’s tree kangaroo, which was born in October 2018, popping its head out of its mother’s pouch and unfurling its long tail. After seven months, the joey is just now revealing itself on a regular basis. It will begin to venture out from the comfort of its mother’s pouch in the next few months, the zoo said.
Tree kangaroos, like most marsupials, are born in an almost embryonic state after a short pregnancy of about 44 days, the zoo said. The jellybean-sized newborn crawls inside the mother’s pouch and latches onto a nipple to continue its development for several more months before revealing itself again.
The sex of the joey hasn’t been determined, the zoo said. It is set to join the international captive breeding program in an effort to conserve the endangered species.
Matchie’s tree kangaroos are most commonly found within the high elevation rain forests of the Huon Peninsula, located on the northeast coast of Papua New Guinea, according to National Geographic.
The species spends most of its time in trees, the zoo said. Its diet consists of mostly leaves, moss and bark. Though they are believed to be solitary animals, the mother and offspring form a strong bond.
The joey marks the ninth of its species born at the zoo, officials said.