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BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos

Little Hawk 12 Jul 03 - 05:35 PM
Helen 12 Jul 03 - 05:53 PM
Amos 12 Jul 03 - 06:06 PM
Helen 12 Jul 03 - 06:08 PM
Helen 12 Jul 03 - 06:11 PM
Little Robyn 12 Jul 03 - 06:14 PM
Helen 12 Jul 03 - 06:27 PM
Amos 12 Jul 03 - 06:39 PM
Little Hawk 12 Jul 03 - 06:43 PM
Little Robyn 12 Jul 03 - 10:32 PM
Bee-dubya-ell 12 Jul 03 - 10:33 PM
LadyJean 12 Jul 03 - 11:46 PM
Billy the Bus 13 Jul 03 - 02:58 AM
Liz the Squeak 13 Jul 03 - 04:35 AM
Little Robyn 13 Jul 03 - 04:40 AM
Liz the Squeak 13 Jul 03 - 05:03 AM
Helen 13 Jul 03 - 05:22 AM
GUEST,shug 13 Jul 03 - 05:37 AM
Hrothgar 13 Jul 03 - 07:00 AM
Billy the Bus 13 Jul 03 - 07:24 AM
KateG 13 Jul 03 - 10:36 AM
McGrath of Harlow 13 Jul 03 - 01:00 PM
Little Hawk 13 Jul 03 - 02:14 PM
McGrath of Harlow 13 Jul 03 - 02:23 PM
Little Hawk 13 Jul 03 - 02:39 PM
McGrath of Harlow 13 Jul 03 - 02:57 PM
Little Hawk 13 Jul 03 - 04:11 PM
okthen 13 Jul 03 - 04:36 PM
Helen 13 Jul 03 - 07:29 PM
McGrath of Harlow 13 Jul 03 - 09:07 PM
JennieG 13 Jul 03 - 09:39 PM
Sorcha 13 Jul 03 - 11:50 PM
Callie 14 Jul 03 - 02:47 AM
Liz the Squeak 14 Jul 03 - 04:34 AM
Teribus 14 Jul 03 - 07:20 AM
McGrath of Harlow 14 Jul 03 - 07:30 AM
Hrothgar 14 Jul 03 - 07:58 AM
Gurney 15 Jul 03 - 06:36 AM
Wilfried Schaum 16 Jul 03 - 04:06 AM
Wilfried Schaum 16 Jul 03 - 04:09 AM
JennieG 16 Jul 03 - 06:56 AM
Bob Bolton 16 Jul 03 - 09:04 AM
Little Hawk 16 Jul 03 - 12:41 PM
Liz the Squeak 16 Jul 03 - 01:19 PM
Bob Bolton 16 Jul 03 - 09:00 PM
JennieG 16 Jul 03 - 09:42 PM
Billy the Bus 16 Jul 03 - 10:26 PM
Helen 16 Jul 03 - 11:09 PM
Billy the Bus 17 Jul 03 - 12:14 AM
Liz the Squeak 17 Jul 03 - 04:26 AM
Billy the Bus 17 Jul 03 - 04:39 AM
Hrothgar 17 Jul 03 - 06:41 AM
Gurney 17 Jul 03 - 06:50 AM
Billy the Bus 17 Jul 03 - 07:16 AM
Billy the Bus 17 Jul 03 - 07:57 AM
Bob Bolton 17 Jul 03 - 08:21 AM
Bob Bolton 17 Jul 03 - 08:31 AM
Liz the Squeak 17 Jul 03 - 05:58 PM
Helen 17 Jul 03 - 07:03 PM
McGrath of Harlow 17 Jul 03 - 07:59 PM
Art Thieme 17 Jul 03 - 09:52 PM
Art Thieme 18 Jul 03 - 12:42 AM
Helen 18 Jul 03 - 01:37 AM
Art Thieme 19 Jul 03 - 08:01 PM
raredance 21 Jul 03 - 11:26 PM
Hrothgar 22 Jul 03 - 04:44 AM
JennieG 22 Jul 03 - 05:37 AM
raredance 22 Jul 03 - 06:47 AM
Bob Bolton 22 Jul 03 - 10:57 PM
Roger the Skiffler 23 Jul 03 - 04:18 AM
Bob Bolton 23 Jul 03 - 09:05 PM
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Subject: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Little Hawk
Date: 12 Jul 03 - 05:35 PM

Just wondering what is the difference between them...or are they the same thing? Any Australian catters out there who can elaborate on this? Has anyone dealt directly with them, had them as pets or anything else like that?

And are they actually good boxers?

Remember, folks, it is your responsibility to correct any false impressions made by Hollywood movies, Crocodile Dundee, and all that, and set the matter straight here about wallabies and kangaroos.

- LH


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Helen
Date: 12 Jul 03 - 05:53 PM

Hi Little Hawk,

Wallabies are much smaller than kangaroos. Wallabies might only get to be 2 to 2-1/2 feet high, but I've seen kangaroos nearly 6 feet high. I could look this up somewhere and give you specific info, but I'm basing this on what I've seen.

Male kangaroos are pretty dangerous if you rile them up. I think it's their back legs that are the worst because they lean back on their tail and kick-box with their back legs. They also have big sharp claws for digging so that would do some damage too.

I guess I should supply you with some specific info before left-brained Bob Bolton gets here and gives you the real facts rather than my garbled version (grin!).

The other one you don't rile up is a platypus because it has a very dangerous spur on its back legs so people who think that they are "cute" and pick them up often regret it.

Koalas shouldn't be handled at all because they get stressed easily, so the tourist parks which allow koala cuddling are not doing the right thing.

Helen


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Amos
Date: 12 Jul 03 - 06:06 PM

Well, so...is a joey a baby kangaroo only? Or is a baby wallaby (a wallababy) also known as a joey? Or are they called espressos? (leedle joke there).

A


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Helen
Date: 12 Jul 03 - 06:08 PM

Boxing kangaroos (with photo)

The Kangaroo is one of the most recognized Aussie icons. It is one of the largest marsupials and is native ONLY to Australia. It can grow to an overall length of 94 – 95 inches (240 cm) and weigh over 130 lbs (66 kg). An adult male can cover more than 29 feet (9 m) in a single jump. It can approach a top speed of between 37 – 44 miles per hour (60 – 70 km/h). A collusion with a kangaroo will inflict a lot of damage not only to the marsupial but to the vehicle you are travelling in ! Hence trucks, buses, utes (pick ups) and some private cars have a front mounted bull bar ('roo bar) to protect the vehicle.
To establish dominance over other males, male kangaroos box with each other to gain favourable mating rights with their female partners. Come on over, Mike Tyson...

By the way, kangaroos don't attack people and start boxing them unless the person is threatening or aggressive and riles them up. It's the equivalent of dancing with bears and falls into the category of mistreating animals, in my not-so-humble opinion.

kangaroos and wallabies - the facts and I was right about guessing 2-1/2 feet tall for wallabies.

Helen


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Helen
Date: 12 Jul 03 - 06:11 PM

"wallababy" - that's a good one! Espressos - I don't get that one, but then it is early on sunday morning so the brain is still a bit sleepy.

Yes, joeys are baby wallabies and kangaroos.

Helen


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Little Robyn
Date: 12 Jul 03 - 06:14 PM

The difference between wallabies and kangaroos is akin to the difference between mice and rats - similar family, different size, and other minor differences in shape etc.
Wallabies have been imported into New Zealand (loose in the bush) but kangaroos are only in zoos here.
Kiwi Robyn


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Helen
Date: 12 Jul 03 - 06:27 PM

That's a good analogy, Robyn. wish I'd thought of that one.

For me the most interesting fact about kangaroos and wallabies is the size of the babies when they are born. The kangaroo baby is only about an inch long and looks more like an embryo and crawls up to the pouch (ain't instinct a wonderful thing) and stays there until it fully develops. I've seen this on tv - this tiny thing that looks more like a leech than a mammal crawling up the belly of the mother into the pouch. Amazing. This is why they are called marsupials, because of the pouch.

Helen


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Amos
Date: 12 Jul 03 - 06:39 PM

Helen:

Yankee slang includes the word "joe" for coffee, circa 1932 I think. Anyway I thought a baby roo being a joey (a diminuitive of joe) a wallababy would be an espresso (a very small version of coffee). Sorry to be so obscure!! :>)

A


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Little Hawk
Date: 12 Jul 03 - 06:43 PM

Thanks for all the great info, Helen! These are certainly interesting animals, and they sound quite adaptable too. I hope they continue to flourish.

- LH


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Little Robyn
Date: 12 Jul 03 - 10:32 PM

I have an 8mm movie taken by my Mum on our Aussie holiday in 1969, at Healesville animal sanctuary near Melbourne. My little (8 year old) brother, Terry, was 'talking' to a smallish female kangaroo which reached out and grabbed his coat, then I remembered about the balancing act before they rip your guts out. In the film, I move closer, you can't hear what I said because it's silent film but the roo turns from Terry and grabs my woolie jumper on the shoulder. At that point I spin round and the roo comes too, and my Mum keeps filming the action! I did get away and she didn't rip my guts out, but that put me off blimin Skippys! She may have been protecting her Joey - the tail was poking out of her pouch, but little Terry was harmless.
Robyn


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Bee-dubya-ell
Date: 12 Jul 03 - 10:33 PM

What about wallabies as pets? Anybody know anyone that has them?

I was thinking about buying a just-weaned pair several years ago but the price of about $1000 USD was more than I was willing to pay, especially since I wasn't sure how our cats would take to them. A thousand bucks is a little pricey for catfood-on-the-hoof.

Bruce


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: LadyJean
Date: 12 Jul 03 - 11:46 PM

Friends of Patrick O'Brian may remember when Stephen Maturin had a run in with a platypus. Careful when fraternizin with platypi.


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Billy the Bus
Date: 13 Jul 03 - 02:58 AM

Little Robyn,

I do NOT believe that you are the source of the old Trans-Taaman chestnut, of crossing a Kiwi with an Ozzie, to end up with a "Woolly Jumper"..... ;)

Sam


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 13 Jul 03 - 04:35 AM

No, you just get a black bird that trembles a lot and eats the heads off bats.....

It's crossing a sheep with a 'roo that gets you the woolly jumper.

Of course, if it were an elephant and a 'roo you'd get bloody big holes all over Africa.

Koalas - they smell. They smell BAAAAAAAAAAAAAAD. They eat eucalyptus and so they end up exuding the aroma in sweat - much like humans do when they eat vast amounts of garlic. I know of no-one who would get close enough to cuddle one due to the stink. And even if they did, like as not the koala would piss on them.

Give me a good, honest achidnea any day.

LTS


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Little Robyn
Date: 13 Jul 03 - 04:40 AM

Yup Sam. I nearly came home with a roo attached to the back of my woolly jumper! (Or with a big hole in my gut!)
That would have been about the time you were still living in Wellington, wouldn't it??? 1969.
Cheers,
Robyn


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 13 Jul 03 - 05:03 AM

There was until a few years ago a pack of wild wobbalies roaming on one of the British moors - can't for the life of me remember which one. An animal park had lost a few and they'd adapted so well, they started to breed in the wild. There were reports of a strange ghostly creature at one point, that turned out to be a wild albino wobbaly.

And is it really true that 'kangaroo' is the Aboriginal word for 'buggered if I know mate'?

LTS

And yes, I know, but I've called them wobbalies since I was 4, hard to break the habit of a lifetime.


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Helen
Date: 13 Jul 03 - 05:22 AM

"And is it really true that 'kangaroo' is the Aboriginal word for 'buggered if I know mate'?"

Yes that's it - well that's the modern Oz-lish translation of the original.

Bruce, the second page of info I linked to above is actually a U.S. site with some info on keeping wallabies as pets. It does say that they are higher maintenance than cats, dogs etc and you would need to make a high level of commitment over a lot of years to look after them.

Helen


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: GUEST,shug
Date: 13 Jul 03 - 05:37 AM

Marsupials Only come from Australia and that means no where else has then as an indigenous species.
Just a little something for you to read and keep for pub quizes and the like
Shug


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Hrothgar
Date: 13 Jul 03 - 07:00 AM

They are both members of the family Macropodidae. Kangaroos are the larger members. The biggest are the red kangaroos, which inhabit the open grasslands. The slightly smaller grey kangaroos (which in many cases seem to have interbred with the reds - let's not go into the DNA chains) also inhabit the grasslands, but from my observation they like to have some scrub or forest available for heavier cover. I think that this is because traditionally the big reds can rely on speed to get out of trouble, while the smaller animals might not.

Wallabies tend to be smaller, and inhabit a wide range of areas. Some can climb trees, and other specialise in rocky outcrops. The best known of these is probably macropus robustus, the common rock wallaby or euro, after whom the well known currency is named.

Some wallabies are also indigenous to New Guinea.

Another "Buggered if I know" story:

Early explorer, to aboriginal, after seeing strange bouncing animal:

"Can you tell me what animal that is?"

Aboriginal, not having the faintest idea what was meant, and attempting to imitate explorer:

"Can-you-oo ..."

Another snippet of absolutely vital information: Somebody who is not entirely compos mentis might be referred to as having "a few kangaroos loose in the top paddock."


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Billy the Bus
Date: 13 Jul 03 - 07:24 AM

Robyn,

1969, I was closing Tophouse Hotel
no wallabies (or wannabies) there then. Howsomever... a few years earlier, Gerald Durrell wrote (& filmed) a damned good description of the birth of a kangaroo. The words are in "Two in the Bush" - BBC may have the film footage...

Helen, your definition of 'kangaroo' has totally shattered my life - I always thought of AA Milne's 'Kanga' and 'Roo'... Anyway...

Kangaroo, Helen = (I'll get the jump on you)

Cheers - Sam (just to the right of Marsupialmania) - he ducks with no thoughts of platty-pussies. Chortle....


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: KateG
Date: 13 Jul 03 - 10:36 AM

Guest, shug wrote:

"Marsupials Only come from Australia and that means no where else has then as an indigenous species.
Just a little something for you to read and keep for pub quizes and the like
Shug "

Actually, we have one marsupial in North America, the opossum --- or given that this is Mudcat -- the 'possum. It plays dead when threatened, hence "playing 'possum." They are nocuturnal scavengers and not terribly bright. Nor particularly cute, since they have long narrow snouts with lots of needle sharp teeth, red eyes and nekkid rat-like prehensile tails. The vet-tech sister of a friend of mine fostered some baby possums at the same time she was fostering a baby raccoon. It was not a fair competition, the baby coon was so much more appealing, the poor possums didn't have a chance.


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 13 Jul 03 - 01:00 PM

And then you've got wallaroos, which are in-between sized. Here's a site with a few pictures.

Possum saren't the only non-Australiam marsupial;s: "Australia has about 120 species of marsupials, New Guinea has 53 species of marsupials, South and Central America have 90 species of marsupials, and North America has only two species of marsupials." - that is from this site.

You learn something new every day on the Mudcat.


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Little Hawk
Date: 13 Jul 03 - 02:14 PM

Thanks again. Lovely animals indeed. I think all the white folks in Australia should be confined to a small restricted area in order that the kangaroos and wallabies are not bothered overly much. Then excursions could be arranged so that curious marsupials get a chance to see the white people (who would be safely confined behind chain-link fences). I suggest that urban areas such as metropolitan Canberra, Sydney, and a handful of other spots be used in this fashion, leaving the rest of the country gloriously free for crocodiles, 'roos, platypuses, and all the rest. Koalas could serve as park security and man the gates.

If I can talk George Bush into backing this idea, you may expect an uninvited visit from 150,000 or so heavily armed American troops within a year or two, to carry out this liberation and democratization policy for Oz. I said "if". I'm not sure he'll go for it, because kangaroos don't have much financial clout at all on the international commodity exchanges...but they ARE cute and telegenic, which should guarantee support from the American public, specially when they hear about the horrific atrocities suffered by momma kangaroos and their joeys in your secret chemical warfare labs, where you manufacture those WMD's that we all know you've got hidden...somewhere.

If he does go for it, just remember this: "resistance is futile" :-)

- LH


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 13 Jul 03 - 02:23 PM

And I assume a similar package of continenetal improvement for North America?

The way things are going I suppose a future in which virtually everyone lives in a few mega-cities and suburbs, and the rest of the planet is left to recover is quite on the cards. More especially in places like Australia and America, but even in Europe there are regions whch are becoming virtually depopulated.

Wallabies have escaped from a number of zoos in England, including Whipsnade, and they do quite well surviving at first, but the occasional hard winter always seems to have done for them sooner or later. I don't know if they've fared better in any other parts of the world where they aren't native.


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Little Hawk
Date: 13 Jul 03 - 02:39 PM

Well, maybe in Canada and Mexico, McGrath, but certainly not in the godfearing USA! The Bush administration is in the business of EXPORTING "democracy" by force, not establishing it on the home turf! No siree. It's the rest of the World that has to shape up, boyo, not the "land of the free and the home of the brave" where everything is danged near perfect or would be if we could just imprison all the liberals, Ay-rabs, and crack dealers.

Boing! Boing! Boing! Love them 'roos! More bounce to the ounce.

- LH


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 13 Jul 03 - 02:57 PM

That's the Government - but I was reading somewhere that there are huge areas of the USA where fewer people are living than there were 50 or even a hundred years ago.


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Little Hawk
Date: 13 Jul 03 - 04:11 PM

I wouldn't doubt it. The prevailing $ySStem managed to exterminate not only the buffalo, but also most of the original inhabitants of those areas.

Man, this thread has drifted far afield. And it's all my fault. :-)

- LH


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: okthen
Date: 13 Jul 03 - 04:36 PM

Amos, surely baby wallaby's are wannabe's

ducking and running
bill


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Helen
Date: 13 Jul 03 - 07:29 PM

Sam, watch out or I'll hop right over the Tasman and box your ears!

Little Hawk, our kangaroos and emus do need to be liberated. Unfortunately kangaroos are being killed for pet food (there is often a population explosion of them and this is deemed to solve the problem, but it is really the graziers - farmers with grazing livestock like dairy cows, and sheep - who think that they are a threat to their profits. Emus are being farmed for their meat as well. The only way I could eat either is if I were starving with nothing else to eat, i.e. the Aboriginal way of life, but I wouldn't be clever enough to catch them.

Amos, now I get the joke. Clever!
Another aside: the word playtpus comes from the Greek and not the Latin so the plural is not platypi but platypuses, and similarly with octopuses.

Helen


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 13 Jul 03 - 09:07 PM

Well I believe, pedantically, the appropriate plural, as Greek words, would be platypoi and octopoi. But I'd go in practice for -puses.


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: JennieG
Date: 13 Jul 03 - 09:39 PM

When my kids were small they referred to both kangaroos and wallabies as "kangawallaflopses" - a word that is still used in our house. On the south coast of New South Wales is a lovely spot called Pebbly Beach where the kangaroos come out of the bush onto the beach. Although they move amongst humans fearlessly they are still wild animals, as the occasional tourist has found out. When my older son was about 8 he was eating some food - bread, I think - at Pebbly Beach and was attacked by a hungry roo; neither was hurt although Stephen was a bit shaken up!
In Canberra the Governor-General's rather nice house has large roos in the backyard (it's a big backyard), they come into suburbia.
But I still reckon the King and Queen of them all is The Wombat.
Cheers
JennieG


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Sorcha
Date: 13 Jul 03 - 11:50 PM

Now listen up--WHO says possums aren't cute?? I love 'em and the adult one we caught in the yard last summer did NOT 'play possum' and it was after dark too. He hissed and spit and did everything else he could, but he ended up in cat crate anyway. I wanted to keep him but They wouldn't let me so he ended up getting a new home down on the river.


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Callie
Date: 14 Jul 03 - 02:47 AM

Platypodes is the correct plural I believe!

At the beginning of the year when there were fires around the middle of the state I was visiting Canberra. When they said the roos had come into town to escape the fires they weren't wrong. Driving through suburban streets after gig I saw a roo standing tall at the local bus-stop - looking up the street as though waiting for a bus. Thing is, he'd missed the last bus by a few hours!

Callie


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 14 Jul 03 - 04:34 AM

All quiet on the koala front then..... God, they stink!

LTS


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Teribus
Date: 14 Jul 03 - 07:20 AM

Wallabies have been hopping around the Peak District of Derbyshire since late twenties/early thirties - as far as I know they are still there.


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 14 Jul 03 - 07:30 AM

This Glasgow Zoo site mentions the Peak District wallabies - and also has this rather charming note about Scottish wallabies:

In Scotland, Lady Arran maintains a very large colony on one of the larger islands; Inchcailloch, on Loch Lomond, from where, in severe winters, some hop across the frozen loch surface to live in the woodlands at the lochside. From time-to-time these are seen (or narrowly missed) by car-borne tourists, causing great consternation.

I love the image of a mob of wallabies hopping across the frozen loch in time to a rendering of "Loch Lomond". They could use it as an advert for Australian Lager.


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Hrothgar
Date: 14 Jul 03 - 07:58 AM

Probably be better of getting jobs in oubs - as bouncers.

I was just leaving.


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Gurney
Date: 15 Jul 03 - 06:36 AM

From spotty memory;
Only male Platypuses (Platypi?) have poisonous spines, and they are the only mammal that does.
When recovering population after a cull, Kangaroos and Wallabies are a very efficient production line, and can have a Joey alongside, a Joey in the pouch, and an embryo in the womb.
I read it, so it must be true. Heh.


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Wilfried Schaum
Date: 16 Jul 03 - 04:06 AM

Let me try to solve the mystery of more than one platypus:
Platypi (Latin) also is the modern pronunciation of platypoi (Greek). Both forms are wrong, unfortunately. Like with the octopus (eightfoot) one part of the name platypus (flatfoot) is Greek pous (foot), stem: pod*. So the correct plural should be platypodes.
But for the average use I think we can stick to the homely platypuses. But be aware of a clear and distinguished pronounciation: in slurred speech it could be mistaken for platypussy (the platypus' girl friend).

A hail to Fosters and McGrath for the marsupials around Loch Lomond!
Wilfried


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Wilfried Schaum
Date: 16 Jul 03 - 04:09 AM

Beg your pardon, just forgot that I just left in this thread

Wilfried


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: JennieG
Date: 16 Jul 03 - 06:56 AM

Gurney, you read it correctly - a female roo can have 3 young 'uns on the go at once, in different stages of development.
Lordy lordy...I thought one at a time was fearsome enough.....!
Cheers
JennieG


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Bob Bolton
Date: 16 Jul 03 - 09:04 AM

G'day Liz the S:

I think whatever koala you met must have been eating some English substitute for uts prefered eucalyptus. Eucalyptus smells fine ... and koalas smell no worse than most wild animals ... they undoubtedly think that we stink!

Sorcha: Some of our Australian 'possums are quite cute - although the ones most likely to be around outer suburban homes - the large brushtail possums, can be pretty determined to stay where they want to be (your roof ... or you kitchen pantry, given half a chance). We have a few tiny ones that weigh as little as 5 grams ... they can climb up a stout blade of grass ... and live on small insects - ar a specialised diet of nectars. (These are in remote areas ... and rarely seen ... being a fraction of the size of a house mouse.)

I often stay with friends who care for injured / lost wildlife ... and specialise in macropods and opossums. When you wander outside their house after dusk, you are likely to bump into wallabies of possums that think Helen (not Mudcat's Helen) is their mum. She relocates recovered males in remote areas, but often releases females near her bushland home, when there is room for another. One wallaby has been bringing each year's new joey back to show Helem/Mum for 6 or seven years now.

I haven't had as close encounters with the possums, apart from one ringtail that must be shortsighted - it pops down from a nearby gum tree ... then is quite disappointed to find it's only me.


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Little Hawk
Date: 16 Jul 03 - 12:41 PM

This is great stuff. So...what are wombats like?

- LH


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 16 Jul 03 - 01:19 PM

Wombats are like mobile cushions with long claws for digging and a permanently baffled expression.

Bob - the koala that was forced upon me was in Auckland Zoo, NZ, it reeked of yuckyliptus and had a look in it's eyes that made Jimi Hendrix look 'with it' and coherent. I avoided its grasp and it made for the next person and immediately pissed down his front. I don't like koalas.

LTS


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Bob Bolton
Date: 16 Jul 03 - 09:00 PM

G'day Liz,

Well, it was off in foreign Kiwiland ... no wonder it was pissed off!

Actually, they reckon a lot of the torpid expression of koalas comes from their intestinal battle with the eucalyptus leaves they eat ... quite a lot of our gum trees lace their leaves with a protective cocktail of poisons - in the case of the Sydney Blue Gum (eucalyptus saligna) the early form has a particularly high level of cyanide ... one of the reasons its juvenile leaves look so blue.

BTW: Back under the Whitlam Labor government of the early '70s, the Minister for Tourism was trying to sell Australian tourism on more than "just cuddling koalas", which, he remarked, were liable scratch and piddle on you. Some time later, the newly selected Miss Australia was trotted off for a photo session with a koala ... which did indeed piddle on her. Minister for Tourism dashed off a telegram: "I told you so!".

Little Hawk: In fact, wombats are the closest relatives of the koala ... which has been described as "a re-arborialised wombat". Apart from the distinct resemblances in face, build and stature, the real indicator is the koala's reversed pouch ... opening downwards. This is essential to the wombat, a burrowing animal, so that its young escape accidental inhumation ... but just trains koala cubs to hang on tight ... from day one!

Wombats are unpopular with farmers (what isn't?) because they just walk straight through any but the stoutest fences. I did hear of a Victorian farmer who fitted very sturdy "wombat flaps" across established wombat pads ... the wombats can push straight through them, but the sheep can't ... unfortunately most farmers try to eradicate them - by blocking, if no longer killing.

They are pretty good escape artists - from an early age. On a visit to the Western Plains Open Zoo, at Dubbo, I had just walked through the "Friendship Farm" - a children's area which has to have cages and pens to let kids approach safe and tame animals (as against the rest of the zoo, which uses variously enhanced "ha-has" instead of fences). I was walking out to the main area when I noticed something bumping against the back of my boots ... it was a young wombat trailing closely at my heels! I had to turn back and find a zookeeper, who explained that this one was escaping from everything they locked it in. Once out, it presumably went looking for Mum ... and the back of my brown elastic-sided boots must have been the closest it could spot to the back view of Mum. (The comments on my physique, offered by my wife, brother and sister-in-law were entirely un-called-for!).   

It is worth remembering that the rear end of a wombat is quite formidable ... described as something between a whale-bone corset and a suit of armour. When (young) dingos foolishly pursue wombats into their burrows, they are often killed. The wombat, if pursued right down the burrow, will stop and squat down ... if the dingo tries to climb up on its back - the wombat just stands up and crushes the dingo against the roof of the burrow!

(Oh yes ... the classic description of their diet is correct ... and its reapplication to ex-patriate Aussie blokes in Earls Court is apt.)

Regards,

Bob Bolton


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: JennieG
Date: 16 Jul 03 - 09:42 PM

Some years ago a doco was made about wombats, it was called "Wombats: bulldozers of the bush" - a very accurate description. I reckon you have to admire any animal that just puts head down and ambles through life never letting anything...fences, doors....get in its way.
I work at a school only a few miles from the centre of Sydney, and we have brush-tailed possums in our trees. I was told that a few years ago a possum got into an open staff room window and went to sleep on a teacher's desk - "poor thing" she said and went to pick it up to put it back outside - it bit her and she had to have a tetanus shot!
Cheers
JennieG


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Billy the Bus
Date: 16 Jul 03 - 10:26 PM

G'day Liz,

I'll endorse Bob's comment about the koala's attitude - especially if it was forced to exist in Auckland.

There are feral wallabies in a few parts of NZ, and they can be quite a hassle for farmers. The best known place is near the South Canterbury, town of Waimate. They have been hunting them for years, and were talking of ereecting a 20 metre tall model as the town's icon. That project didn't get off the ground. They even export Wallaby Pies to Auckland. However, some of the locals have a more friendly attitude to the beasties.

The brush-tail opposum is another Aussie which was imported into NZ, in the late 1800s, and is now 'public enemy #1', stripping foliage from trees in the bush, spreading bovine TB, etc. Millions are spent each year trying to keep numbers down.

Cheers - Sam


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Helen
Date: 16 Jul 03 - 11:09 PM

"The Kiwi (human variety) is another New Zealander which was imported into Oz, in the late 18??s, and is now 'public enemy #1', stripping foliage from trees in the bush, spreading human TB, etc. Millions are spent each year trying to keep numbers down."

Sorry, Sam - couldn't resist it.

Would the last person leaving NZ please turn the lights off.

"A severe natural disaster has hit NZ and hundreds of thousands of lives have been lost. Various countries have sent huge amounts of financial aid to help rebuild the country. Australia has sent over hundreds of thousands of New Zealanders."

Helen
(ducking and running)


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Billy the Bus
Date: 17 Jul 03 - 12:14 AM

Aw, shucks, Helen - I meant to say "Auzzie marsupial". BTW, don't bother sending our ex-pats back..... ;)

Cheers - Sam


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 17 Jul 03 - 04:26 AM

Blimey - there are more New Zealanders outside of NZ than in it and most of them are running pubs and bars in London!

LTS

You are never going to change my opinions on koalas. Sorry, that's life, accept it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Billy the Bus
Date: 17 Jul 03 - 04:39 AM

LtS - I'm pleased to hear my countrymen are doing something useful in the UK. As to your opinions on koalas, we'll grin and bear it.

Cheers - Sam

BTW, you'll be pleased to know I got your revenge on my 'Kuddly Koala' when I was a kid - it got piddled on more than once when I wet the bed - Yours Incontinently - Sam


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Hrothgar
Date: 17 Jul 03 - 06:41 AM

If you play cricket with a cricket bat, what do you play with a wombat?


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Gurney
Date: 17 Jul 03 - 06:50 AM

You've forgotten already....
Helen, when a NZ Prime Minister named Muldoon was chided about Kiwi immigration into Oz, he pointed out that "That should raise the average IQ in both countries..."
He had some other quotable quotes, too.


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Billy the Bus
Date: 17 Jul 03 - 07:16 AM

WOM, Hrothgar?

WOM =

1. Wild Old Man
2. Wife Of Mine
etc....

But, to me, WOM = Word of Mouth. He/she/it was a wee cartoon character I drew in the early 80s for Outdoor Education here in NZ. And yeah, there was a sketch of 'Wom' with a Wom-bat...

I do NOT want to remember that phase of life, but will try to find some "Wom" cartoons, and post 'em somewhere...

Now I'm turning into a "Sentimental Bloke", and being charitable to those who live to the left of the Tasman. Talking of wombats. Helen and Bob, remember "Death of a Wombat"? We had a replay on the wireless a few months back....

"Waddle and crump...." - Sam, who's misty-eyed, thinking of past times.


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Billy the Bus
Date: 17 Jul 03 - 07:57 AM

Gurney,

Wash your mouth with Sunlight. That quote was pre-Rob, goes back to Kiwi Kieth days, and it was an NZBC announcer, methinks...

Anyway.. going back to 'Robber Muldoon' - He's the only PM (or GG) that I haven't spun the bull with in the past 40 years...

I was at a party with him in the late 70s, I was bar-steward, and he was so short I didn't see him...;)

Sam(nobulent)


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Bob Bolton
Date: 17 Jul 03 - 08:21 AM

G'day Hrothgar,

What the poms (did) play with a WOMBAT


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Bob Bolton
Date: 17 Jul 03 - 08:31 AM

G'day Hrothgar, (as I was writing when the damned thing decided to depart)

What the poms (did) play with a WOMBAT was war games. It was the acronym for Weapon Of Mobility Battalion Anti- Tank ... an artillery-sized recoilless weapon firing 'shaped-charge' anti-tank projecttiles (now superseded by a MOBAT).

Billy: Death of a Wombat was an odious pile of marsupial droppings ... all that rubbish about poor lumbering wombat being overtaken by the fire. The author should watch wombats disturbed from their usual habits by fire or flood - but not stand in their way! They are capable of a spectacular turn of speed for such a solid animal.

Regards,

Bob Bolton


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 17 Jul 03 - 05:58 PM

Oi, us solid animals can be pretty nippy coming over there to slap you upside the head!

LTS


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Helen
Date: 17 Jul 03 - 07:03 PM

The non-aussie 'Catters may have missed Bob Bolton's rather coy allusion so I, being much less coy, will spell it out for you.

Bob said: "(Oh yes ... the classic description of their diet is correct ... and its reapplication to ex-patriate Aussie blokes in Earls Court is apt.)"

Some Aussie males are described as wombats because a wombat eats roots, shoots and leaves. If you put an extra comma after the word "eats" and bear in mind that in Oz the word root means to have sexual intercourse (in a particularly macho context, i.e. it's never used, except in a joking way, in the context of intimate, warm relationships but aptly describes a one-night-stand, for example) then....

Helen


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 17 Jul 03 - 07:59 PM

Does Folk Roots (or fROOTS as they try to call it these days) get much of a sale in Australia?


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Art Thieme
Date: 17 Jul 03 - 09:52 PM

And then there's the "PADDY MELON"-------------as in Banjo Patterson's great poem 'Christmas In The Bush'. What are these close to??? And do they really make a good stew???

Art Thieme


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Art Thieme
Date: 18 Jul 03 - 12:42 AM

The title of Paterson's poem is actually SANTA CLAUS IN THE BUSH.

aRT


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Helen
Date: 18 Jul 03 - 01:37 AM

Art,

It's also spelled pademelon (but same pronunciation as Paddy Melon).

http://www.dpiwe.tas.gov.au/inter.nsf/WebPages/BHAN-5384X4?open
Tasmanian Pademelon
Description
The pademelon (Thylogale billardierii) is a stocky animal with a relatively short tail and legs to aid its movement through dense vegetation. It ranges in colour from dark-brown to grey-brown above and has a red-brown belly. Males, which are considerably larger than females, have a muscular chest and forearms, and reach up to 12 kg in weight and 1 - 1.2 m in overall length, including the tail. Females average 3.9 kg in weight.

The unusual common name, pademelon, is of Aboriginal derivation. It is also sometimes referred to as the rufous wallaby.

Oddly enough another site says that the name Paddy Melon comes from the English words paddock and melon because on first sight the animals looked like a PADdock full of MELONS. Don't know about that one.

They probably do cook up pretty well, although I've never eaten any sort of roo-related meat. Aboriginals dined well on roos, though. I think it was a large part of their diet when the hunting was good.

Kangaroo meat is being served in some of the best Oz restaurants as a new taste sensation.

There is a well known recipe for the raucous birds known as galahs. (To refer to a person as "a bit of a galah" is not very complimentary. It can mean loud-mouthed and flashy, or it can mean that they are not to be taken as seriously as they take themselves.) The recipe is: Boil an axe head and a galah until the axe head is tender. Toss the galah and eat the axe head.

Helen


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Art Thieme
Date: 19 Jul 03 - 08:01 PM

Helen,

Thanks for your good info. I knew it was wallaby-like, but the details you posted pretty much let me see it clearly.

We have a similar recipe on the Illinois River here in Illinois. It is for the fish, CARP. You take the carp and wrap it in fresh horse manure. Dig a pit and put glowing coals at the bottom. Then the carp and then a layer of seaweed and a layer of gravel alternately until the pit is filled. Let that bake for several days. Then uncover it all, crack the dried horse manure off of the carp with an ax handle, throw away the fish and eat the dung.

It's interesting to folklorists that the AX survives in both tales. ;-)

Art


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: raredance
Date: 21 Jul 03 - 11:26 PM

I take some issue with the statement in the link above that North America has only 2 species of endemic marsupials. If only the USA is considered and Mexico is relegated to Central America, then there is only one, the Virginia oppossum. If Mexico is included in North America then one would have to add to the list the southern oppossum, water oppossum, grayish mouse oppossum, Mexican mouse oppossum, Robinson's mouse oppossum, Central American wooly oppossum, and the gray 4-eyed oppossum (no it doesn't really have 4 eyes, just a couple of curiously placed spots)

rich r


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Hrothgar
Date: 22 Jul 03 - 04:44 AM

All sorts of possumbilities, aren't there?

:-)


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: JennieG
Date: 22 Jul 03 - 05:37 AM

Hrothgar,
I couldn't possumbly add anything further without making a galah of meself!

Cheers
JennieG


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: raredance
Date: 22 Jul 03 - 06:47 AM

Good one, Hrothgar!

rich r


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Bob Bolton
Date: 22 Jul 03 - 10:57 PM

G'day Helen,

The Aboriginal etymology for "pademelon" is from probably from Dharuk (Sydney region Aboriginal) badimaliyan - assimilated with more familiar English words.

The "story" about a "paddy full of melons" is about as reliable as any other etymology that needs a 'story' to explain it!

The reason they make good eating is that they are more forest dwelling than the big 'roos of the plains - probably less muscular, and so, more tender ... but the songs have two bob each way ... they are going to tenderise the Pademelon by judicious stewing! (Maybe they are also easier to catch, rather than wasting ammunition trying to shoot them ... doesn't the settler in Paterson's poem send his son out to "run down a pademelon ..."?)

Regards,

Bob Bolton


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Roger the Skiffler
Date: 23 Jul 03 - 04:18 AM

There was a group (herd?) feral on Cannock Chase in Staffordshire when I were a lad (could get there by tram and change from fourpence)but cold winters and roadkill has removed them all by now. I never did see one there.

RtS
(...the day war broke out....)


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Subject: RE: BS: Question about wallabies and kangaroos
From: Bob Bolton
Date: 23 Jul 03 - 09:05 PM

G'day RtS,

I understand that there were populations of some of the smaller wallabies, such as the pademelon, established in England and France in the 19th century. The idea was for them to be a sort of extra-large "rabbit" for the poor to supplement their table fare. (Well, in France, anyway ... I'm not sure the Poms wouldn't have regarded them as the local Lord/Squire's property and had you up for Kangaroo poaching (Yeah! I know ... up before a "Kangaroo Court".)

I think the smaller forest species would have survived fairly well ... I'm not sure how well they would have held up against energetic harvesting - let alone the local weather. I also think that the spread of pet dogs in post-WW II years would have knocked down numbers. (I don't think the poacher's lurcher would have been such a factor by then!)

Regards,

Bob Bolton


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