Kangaroo injures Australian politician

Saturday, May 18, 2013

File photo of an eastern grey kangaroo.
Image: JJ Harrison.
File photo of ACT politician Shane Rattenbury.
Image: Champion Blue.

A kangaroo injured Australian politician Shane Rattenbury in the Australian capital, Canberra, on Thursday. Mr. Rattenbury was taking a morning jog in the Canberra suburb of Ainslie when the kangaroo surprised him, and in the ensuing confrontation, Mr. Rattenbury was scratched several times on the leg.

By Mr Rattenbury's account, the kangaroo was an eastern grey kangaroo, which is a common species in Australia. Neither the kangaroo nor Mr. Rattenbury saw each other until they were close, when they both were surprised by each other. The kangaroo, which had been behind a hedge, then started hopping around and Rattenbury ducked for cover. The kangaroo bounced on him while he was still on the ground. He was left lying in the street while another pedestrian went to his assistance. He was driven home and visited a hospital, receiving a tetanus shot. He attended parliament later that day, where his colleagues made kangaroo jokes about him.

Rattenbury is a member of the ACT Greens, a sitting member of the Australian Capital Territory Legislative Assembly, and was an expedition leader of a Greenpeace anti-whaling expedition in 2006.

There are many kangaroos living in wildlife reserves around the Australian capital, which often enter suburban areas. The attack follows previous incidents in 2009 when a kangaroo smashed inside a Canberra home, and in 2010 when a kangaroo knocked a jogger unconscious in nearby Mount Ainslie. Kangaroo culls in the Australian capital have been held annually for several years, which have drawn protests. Kangaroo management in Canberra was the subject of a television documentary in 2011 called Kangaroo Mob.