While driving out to a camping spot in Oso last weekend, I passed by a sign with an arrow pointing to Kangaroos. I certainly wasn’t in Australia, so at the campsite a friend and I decided to do a Google search for kangaroos in Arlington, and found out about The Outback Kangaroo Farm. We were pretty excited, so we drove back the 30 minutes from our campsite the next day to take a tour. For a super affordable $9 per adult ($8 for children, and cash or check only), you can go on one of four tours per day through this farm. My first thought upon arriving was that I’d be standing behind a cage, listening to someone speak. However, this was only true for the first exhibit (the lemurs, of which three had just recently had babies). After that, we were able to walk into every paddock and enclosure, feed most of the animals, and pet and play with them. Don’t get me wrong – this wasn’t all just for fun. The tours are guided and are also somewhat educational (more on a child-level, as there were plenty of little ones on the tour). But can you really resist the chance to pet a wallaby? Peacocks, chickens, and goats roam the farm pretty freely. In fact one particular goat decided to meet us at the beginning of the tour and just follow us the whole way. Before we got to the kangaroos, we met a llama, an alpaca, several donkeys, a miniature horse, and a pretty large 25-year old tortoise. We also met an ostrich and a couple of emus, which was the only other enclosure we couldn’t enter.
The wallabies and kangaroos live together in a pretty large area. Several are stand-offish and stay far away, but most bound up to the people that walk in. We had a little bit of food for them, but even when we didn’t hold food they’d come right up and snuggle in for a pat on the head. Most were born and raised there, as the farm has been around for 15 years. They’re used to humans. One kangaroo had a new baby in her pouch, and we were able to feel her stomach and feel the baby the way you’d feel a woman’s stomach when her baby is kicking while they explained to us how kangaroo babies grow and mature. I should also mention that this place sells wallabies and kangaroos, for $1200 to $1500. Wallabies are totally silent animals, but that doesn’t make them great for a Seattle apartment or high-density neighborhood – they’re not exactly an animal you can potty train and need a lot of space to run around. Oh well, my dog would get jealous anyway.
Long story short: this place gets a lot of thumb’s up from me. I’m not normally a huge supporter of animals in captivity, but these guys all had plenty of room, shelter, food & water, and seemed genuinely happy. Plus, I learned a few somethings. Next time you find yourself near Arlington, go check this place out!