Native to Australia, Kangaroos are some of the most beloved and iconic animals in the world. An interesting fact about them is that the females got 3 of them! Not just Kangaroos, there are a few from the same family who have the same trait. We will find out who are they and more DATSInteresting! facts about these large marsupials.
Being admired by people around the globe for their unique physical characteristics and behaviors, Kangaroos can be found in many different sizes, colors, and types, with red kangaroos being the largest species. They are well known for their powerful hind legs which they use to hop at great speed across open terrain. They also possess strong claws used for digging burrows, as well as muscular tails used for balance and support while hopping.
Beyond their physical features, kangaroos also impress people with their social behavior in groups called mobs or herds comprised of several females led by a single dominant male known as a boomer. With such fascinating traits and abilities, it is no surprise that kangaroos remain one of the most beloved animals on our planet!
Let’s get “into, into, into” business
Yeah well, there are no 3 holes to get into though. Female kangaroos have three vaginas that lead to separate uteri and two ovaries. All these three vaginas Female kangaroos have are used for reproduction.
Kangaroos have three vaginas because they are polyestrous, meaning they can enter into heat multiple times throughout the year and produce multiple litters of joeys (baby kangaroos or other marsupials). The three vaginas help to separate the reproductive process so that each baby receives its own nutrients. The anterior vagina is used for sperm storage and delivery, while the posterior and middle vaginas are used for mating and birth. [Source: NatGeo]
Koalas, wombats, and Tasmanian devils all share the three-vagina structure. The side ones carry sperm to the two uteruses (and male marsupials often have two-pronged penises), while the middle vagina sends the joey down to the outside world.
Kangaroos mate by the male following the female closely and using a combination of clapping his hands and vocalizing to try to catch her attention. He will then proceed to mount her from behind. If she is not ready or interested in mating, she will kick or jump away from him.
Once contact is made, the male will wrap his tail around hers for stability and clasp her rump with his forepaws. She may attempt to push him off but if successful mating has occurred, she will accept him and they will remain coupled for up to several minutes before separating.
During mating, the male kangaroo’s penis enters the female’s first vagina, depositing sperm in the first uterus. The sperm then travels up to the second uterus through a connecting canal called the median vagina. From there, the sperm can either travel up to the third uterus through another connecting canal called the lateral vagina, or they can stay in the second uterus and fertilize an egg there.
The unusual reproductive habits
The reason for this unique reproductive system is thought to be related to kangaroos’ unusual reproductive habits. Kangaroos have a very short gestation period, with their young developing outside of the uterus in a pouch. This means that female kangaroos can be pregnant with multiple young at different stages of development, and the three vaginas allow for the fertilization of multiple eggs simultaneously.
In summary, kangaroo sperms travel through three vaginas by entering the first vagina and depositing sperm in the first uterus, then traveling up to the second uterus through the median vagina, and finally traveling up to the third uterus through the lateral vagina.