SADIE'S TALE

Sadie came to live at Roo Gully at 9.30 pm on the 19th September 1996.
A frightened little face peeped out of the sweater she was wrapped in
and as soon as we saw how sad she looked we named her Sadie.

She was the kangaroo who changed our lives, and began our Roo Gully dream.
We love her dearly.

Sadie alert
She was the first kangaroo joey we had ever cared for.
In those days we had no idea how to take care of a young joey.
We tried to get advice but books contradicted each other, and it was inevitable we made some horrendous mistakes.

Surprisingly Sadie survived them all.
Our frustrating experience made us all the more determined to learn all we could and we vowed to pass on our information to others.
Sadie in pouch
Sadie and Chloe
Sadie's early companion was our little Red Heeler puppy, Chloe.
Growing up together they shared many adventures and loved chasing each other around the garden.
Chloe Sadie play
They were like sisters, and it was a relationship that was to last a lifetime.
Sadie and Chloe asleep
Sadie also formed an astounding bond with us, and shared in everything we did.
Sadie 'helps' with ironing
Even the ironing!
We began to form what was almost like a mother daughter relationship.
Sadie Carol mates
Sadie Carol spar
And it was fantastic to be this close to her, even though she liked to play rough at times!
The following year Katie came to live with us, and she and Sadie became mates.
Katie and Sadie mates
Then young Rosie was orphaned. She loved Sadie too and treated her like she was her mother.
Sadie with young Rosie
It was around about this time that we realised Sadie was really growing up.
One morning she returned with a fractured hand and several cuts and bruises. She had been attacked by a wild buck.
Rosie consoles Sadie
Rosie was so loving towards her, licking Sadie's wounds and staying with her until she was well again.
A few months later Sadie returned home with another young boomer. He was very debonair and handsome. And better still Sadie seemed to like him. We named him Oliver.
Oliver
Over Christmas we noticed Sadie liked to take things easy.
Sadie takes it easy

And on the 4th January 1999 she gave birth to a daughter, who we named Wattle.

Sadie was more than happy to share her new baby and we found ourselves entering a new and fascinating world.

Wattle 30 days old
We filmed Wattle all the way throughout her pouch life and beyond.
It was a wonderful experience, especially when Sadie taught Wattle in our bedroom.
We knew we were the most privileged people in the world.
Sadie and Wattle by door
Sadie teaches Wattle
Sadie with Wattle

Sadie's trust in us was amazing, and the following year we shared her grief when her second joey, Samson,
missed the pouch and died, despite our efforts to attach him to the teat.

Thankfully Oliver returned and a month later Sadie gave birth to her son, Jarrah.

Sadie and Jarrah
Again Sadie shared her joey, and we were able to document and film Jarrah's pouch life adding valuable information to our study into joey development.
By this time 11 joeys had been born at Roo Gully, and with no one going bush we had to do something.
After much thought we decided to erect a fence. Oliver and his mates were not invited in!
Today Sadie is the old lady of the mob, the matriarch, the boss, and a grandmother to Wattle's son, Lipa.
She has responsibilities over the mob and has earned the respect of all the other kangaroos, including the young males
.Sadie at work
But her relationship with us remains as strong as it ever was.
She knows we love her and doesn't hesitate to take liberties, helping herself to anything she fancies in the kitchen while we are not looking!
Sadie the thief
Sadie 'Bucky Beaver' smile
And nothing beats greeting Sadie in the morning and receiving one of her famous 'Bucky Beaver' smiles.
A legacy she still carries today after crashing into the glass kitchen door when she was a young joey.

Although we have tried it is difficult to convey the feelings we have for Sadie.
She has rewarded our love for her with a loyalty that is simply astounding
and because she has shared so much of her life with us
she has given us a greater understanding and a love of her species.

There is no wonder she will always be our special roo.

Carol kisses Sadie
We have learned so much from Sadie, and as her life progresses we continue to learn from her. She has presented us with a marvellous insight into the world of macropods. This is so important because, sad as it may be it, is true to say that although the kangaroo is seen as an Australian icon it has been little studied, especially the Western Grey. There are many species of kangaroo and very few people really do know their social behaviour, their development, their dietary preferences and many other important factors regarding this magnificent creature.
We never expected to be living the life we do, but as everyone knows life has a funny way of turning out. Sadie and the other kangaroos who have joined the Roo Gully mob have placed us in a unique position. We live with them and having been accepted as part of the mob we get to observe intimate details of their lives. But there is so much more to learn and we intend continuing our work at Roo Gully for as long as is physically and financially possible.
The kangaroos have placed us in a privileged position and we do not intend wasting what they are teaching us.
Your 'adoption' will greatly help us continue our work, and could help us make a difference not only to the future understanding of kangaroos, and all macropods, but also to other marsupial species, many of which are threatened or endangered.
Sadie pretty
On behalf of Sadie and her mates we thank you for caring

Sadie's Tale © Roo Gully 2003