Simosthenurus maddocki Wells & Murray, 1979

Maddock's kangaroo, Browsing kangaroo



Taxonomy & Nomenclature



Conservation Status


Last record: Late Pleistocene



New South Wales & South Australia, Australia


Anatomy & Morphology

It weighed an estimated 50kg (Johnson & Prideaux, 2004:557) or 78kg (Helgen et al., 2006; Johnson, 2006:19).


Biology & Ecology

It "had a set of unusual features – slender lower incisors, small cheek teeth and (evidently) a long manipulative tongue – that suggest a diet at least partly of fruit or at least of unusually soft browse." (Johnson, 2006:22).



SAM P18311 (Helgen et al., 2006:303)

SAM S123 07 (Helgen et al., 2006:303)

FUCN 1403 (Helgen et al., 2006:303)






Original scientific description:

Wells, Rod and Murray, P. (1979). A new sthenurine kangaroo (Marsupialia, Macropodidae) from southeastern South Australia. Trans. R. Soc. S. Aust. 103: 213-219.


Other references:

Flannery, Timothy F. and Hope Jeannette. (1983). Occurrences of the extinct macropodid marsupial Simosthenurus maddocki in New South Wales. Australia Mammology 6(1): 37-39.

Fraser, Rebecca A. and Wells, Roderick T. (2006). The palaeontological excavation and taphonomic investigation of a late Pleistocene fossil deposit in Grant Hall, Naracoorte, South Australia. Alcheringa Special Issue 1, 2006: 147-161.

Helgen, Kristofer M., Wells, Rod T., Kear, Benjamin P., Gerdtz, Wayne R. and Flannery, Timothy F. (2006). Ecological and evolutionary significance of sizes of giant extinct kangaroos. Australian Journal of Zoology 54(4): 293-303. [body weight estimate]

Johnson, Chris N. (2006). Australia's Mammal Extinctions: A 50 000 Year History. Port Melbourne, Victoria: Cambridge University Press. x + 278 pp. [p. 19, 22]

Johnson, Chris N. and Prideaux, Gavin J. (2004). Extinctions of herbivorous mammals in the late Pleistocene of Australia in relation to their feeding ecology: no evidence for environmental change as cause of extinction. Australian Ecology 29: 553-557.

Macken, A. C. et al. (2011). Application of sedimentary and chronological analyses to refine the depositional context of a Late Pleistocene vertebrate deposit, Naracoorte, South Australia. Quat. Sci. Rev. 30(19-20): 2690-2702.

Murray, P. F. (1991). The Pleistocene megafauna of Australia, pp. 1071-1164. In: Vickers-Rich, P., Monaghan, J. M., Baird, R. F., and Rich, T. H. Vertebrate Palaeontology of Australiasia. Lilydale, Victoria: Pioneer Design Studio.

Piper, K. J. (2006). A new species of Palorchestidae (Marsupialia) from the Pliocene and early Pleistocene of Victoria. Alcheringa Special Issue 1: 281-294.

Pledge, Neville S. (1990). The Upper Fossil Fauna of the Henschke Fossil Cave, Naracoorte, South Australia. Memoirs of the Queensland Museum (Proceedings of the De Vis Symposium) 28(1): 247-262.

Prideaux, Gavin J. (2004). Systematics and evolution of the sthenurine kangaroos. University of California Publications in Geological Sciences 146:i-xviii, 1-623.

Prideaux, G. J., R. G. Roberts, D. Megirian, K. E. Westaway, J. C. Hellstrom, and J. M. Olley. (2007). Mammalian responses to Pleistocene climate change in southeastern Australia. Geology 35: 33-36.

Reed, E. H. (2006). In Situ Taphonomic Investigation of Pleistocene Large Mammal Bone Deposits from The Ossuaries, Victoria Fossil Cave, Naracoorte, South Australia. Helictite 39(1): 5-15. [subfossil record]

Reed, Elizabeth H. and Bourne, Steven J. (2000). Pleistocene fossil vertebrate sites of the south east region of South Australia. Transactions of the Royal Society of South Australia 124(2): 61-90.

Reed, Elizabeth H. and Bourne, Steven J. (2009). Pleistocene Fossil Vertebrate Sites of the South East Region of South Australia II. Transactions of the Royal Society of South Australia 133(1): 30-40.

Roberts, Richard G, Flannery, Timothy F., Ayliffe, Linda, Yoshida, Hiroyuki, Olley, Jon M., Prideaux, Gavin J., Laslett, Geoff M., Baynes, Alexander, Smith, M. A., Jones, Rhys I. and Smith, Barton L. (2001). New ages for the last Australian megafauna: Continent-wide extinction about 46,000 years ago. Science 292(5523): 1888-1892.

Wells, Rod T., Moriarty, K. and Williams, D. L. G. (1984). The fossil vertebrate deposits of Victoria Fossil Cave Naracoorte: an introduction to the geology and fauna. The Australian Zoologist 21(4): 305-333.

Wells, R. T., and P. F. Murray. (1979). A new sthenurine kangaroo (Marsupialia, Macropodidae) from southeastern South Australia. Transactions of the Royal Society of South Australia 103: 213-219.


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