noun \ˈwä-lə-bē\

: an Australian animal that is like a small kangaroo

plural wallabies also wallaby

Full Definition of WALLABY

:  any of various small or medium-sized kangaroos (especially genus Macropus) — compare rock wallaby

Illustration of WALLABY

Origin of WALLABY

Dharuk (Australian aboriginal language of the Port Jackson area) walabi, waliba
First Known Use: circa 1798


noun    (Concise Encyclopedia)

Bridled nail-tailed wallaby (Onychogalea fraenata).—© Mitch Reardon—National Audubon Society Collection/Photo Researchers

Any of about 25 species of medium-sized kangaroos, found chiefly in Australia. Brush wallabies (11 species) are built like the big kangaroos but differ in dentition. Rock wallabies live among rocks, usually near water. Nail-tailed wallabies, named for a horny growth on the tail tip, rotate their forelimbs while hopping. The small hare wallabies resemble hares in movement and some habits. The small, stocky scrub wallabies, hunted for meat and fur, have short hind limbs and pointy noses. The similar short-tailed scrub wallaby occurs only on two offshore islands of western Australia. Several wallaby species have been exterminated, and several others are endangered.


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