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Potorous platyops
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Infraclass: Marsupialia
Order: Diprotodontia
Family: Potoroidae
Subfamily: Potoroinae
Genus: Potorous
Desmarest, 1804
Type species
Didelphis murina
Cuvier, 1798 (=Didelphis tridactlya Kerr, 1792)

A potoroo is a kangaroo-like marsupial about the size of a rabbit. It is a macropod. All three extant species are threatened, especially the long-footed Potoroo (Endangered) and Gilbert's potoroo (Critically Endangered). The main threats are predation by introduced species (especially foxes) and habitat loss. Potoroos were formerly very common in Australia, and early settlers reported them as being significant pests to their crops.

Gilbert's Potoroo is Australia's most endangered animal. There are only 30–40 known left in the wild. The species was discovered in 1840 by a naturalist called John Gilbert. It was then thought to have become extinct until being rediscovered in 1994 at the Two Peoples Bay Nature Reserve (near Albany) in Western Australia.


A potoroo is any member of the genus Potorous.

In popular culture[edit]


  1. ^ Groves, C. P. (2005). Wilson, D. E.; Reeder, D. M, eds. Mammal Species of the World (3rd ed.). Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press. p. 58. OCLC 62265494. ISBN 0-801-88221-4. 

External links[edit]