Review and photos by Suspsy; edited by bmathison1972
Kangaroo reproduction is truly astounding. A mother gives birth after only 33 days of gestation, upon which the jellybean-sized, underdeveloped neonate crawls blindly from the vagina to the pouch. Once inside, it latches on to a teat and continues to grow until it is finally ready to leave the pouch for good after about 235 days. In the mean time, the mother will likely become pregnant again, but she possesses the uncanny ability to halt the embryo’s development until her current joey is ready to leave her pouch. This process is known as diapause, and it is an essential adaptation for an animal that lives in hot and dry climates like most of Australia.
You may recall that one of my earliest reviews here was for the Southlands Replicas male red kangaroo (Macropus rufus). Unfortunately, I’ve since had to remove it from my son’s collection due to the fact that he was making it bounce up and down on the living room coffee table and leaving scratches in the woodwork from the pointed toe claws! Needless to say, my wife was not pleased. The SR figure now resides on a shelf in my den, but I still wanted my son to have a kangaroo, so I went with the 2017 version from Schleich.
As you can clearly see, there is a baby, or joey, poking its head out of the pouch on this kangaroo’s belly, making it immediately recognizable as a female, AKA doe, flyer, or jill. She is sculpted in a resting pose with her head turned to the right, her body hunched over and her tail firmly pressed against the ground, helping to prop its owner up. This gives our flyer a height of 6.5 cm and a length of 12 cm.
The main colours on this flyer are orange-brown on top and light beige on bottom. The hands and the tips of the feet are airbrushed dark brown. The eyes are glossy black, the nose and mouth are airbrushed black, and the cheeks and the insides of the ears have airbrushed grey. The joey features the same colours, although its left ear is missing the airbrushing. Most female red kangaroos tend to be blue-grey in colour, but those living in arid areas are coloured more like the males, so I guess this flyer is one such individual.
Judging from the size of the joey’s head, and the fact that it’s showing its face outside the pouch in the first place, it is at least 190 days old. Its mother’s arms and limbs have well-defined musculature, giving her a swift, athletic appearance. Her fur looks relatively thin on the head and tail, but shaggier on the thighs and the main body. All in all, it’s not as magnificent a sculpting job as the Southlands Replicas male, but it’s pretty impressive in its own right. One small thing I don’t like is that the hands are moulded together, but opinions will vary.
The Schleich kangaroo is a solid toy that is unlikely to disappoint anyone. My little boy certainly is pleased with it; he even stated that he loves it! Can’t get any higher praise than that!