Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Kangaroos in Kentucky

Kentucky Down Under is a nature preserve/theme park located in Horse Cave, KY (take exit 58 off I-65). Like Henry's Ark, it presents its visitors with the cognitive dissonance of seeing exotic animals roaming semi-openly (as opposed to a constrictive zoo-like environment).

Kangaroos are what Kentucky Down Under is best known for, but there are many other odd Aussie critters creeping around: Emus, Green Tree Pythons, Bettings, Kookaburras, Lorikeets, Swamp Wallabies, etc.

But wild Kangaroo sightings in Kentucky have occurred over the years as well.

In 1899 there was a spate of reports of wild Kangaroos being sighted all across North America, including in Northern Kentucky. I hate to invoke the debunker's term "mass hysteria", but in this case, surely a lot of people thinking they were seeing Kangaroos pop up simultaneous across the continent were mistaken (On the other hand, maybe it was just your standard run-of-the-mill quantum temporal timespace displacement vortex).

In 1974, Kangaroos were reported running wild in Illinois, Indiana, Ohio and Kentucky. There is apparently some truth to this flap, because the Kangaroos were reportedly photographed in Lansing, IL. Further verified sightings occured in 1978 in Wisconsin.

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