I was very excited about today’s filming (but not quite so excited about getting up at 5.30am for it). We were off to meet Brolga, the star of the BBC’s ‘Kangaroo Dundee’. He’s a good old Aussie bloke who felt a bit sorry for the poor little baby kangaroos that are left for dead inside their mother’s pouches when they’re run over by road traffic, so a few years back he set up his own kangaroo sanctuary. He raises the orphaned joeys in pillow cases (which stand in for the mother’s pouch) and then keeps them on the grounds of his sanctuary until he considers them fit enough to be released back into the wild.
In a country with 50 million kangaroos, some people here consider him a bit of a nutter. It’s working out very well for him though. He’s currently described as Australia’s most eligible bachelor, as it’s easy to see why, as the entire crew thought he was awesome. We got to hold joeys in our arms and feed them milk, stroke adult kangaroos on the back as they chowed down on a bucket of seeds and feel the muscles on the alpha male, Roger – a terrifying beast of a kangaroo who can stand up to 3 metres tall on his tail. Brolga had him clamped onto his arm from behind a fence and Roger was nearly strong enough to pull him over. His back legs can disembowel you with a single kick.
I’m now writing this on a plane to our next location – the city of Darwin, capital of the Northern Territory – gazing down at the endless sprawl of semi-desert below, peppered with the occasional bush fire.