Kangaroo Island, like most of South Australia has a mediterranean climate - with a warm but rarerly uncomfortable summer days and a short wet winter. If you are coming to Kangaroo Island for wildlife, keep in mind, anything in a fur jacket (eg. Kangaroos) prefer to come out in the early morning and late afternoon and are most abundant in winter. Remeber to pack a jacket for cool evenings, year round.

SUMMER - December - February

As the summer approaches, wildlife retreat to bushland habitat to shelter during the heat of the day. The land is a contrast of golden pastures against summer wild flowers and the new growth of native trees.

  • Kangaroos and Tamar wallabies are seen predominantly at dawn and dusk.
  • Little penguins moult all their feathers at the end of the breeding season and can lose up to half their body weight.
  • New Zealand Fur seals give birth to chocolate-brown pups.
  • The Australian Sea-lion breeding season begins with pups born from January to June 2006.
  • Heath goannas lay 10-17 eggs in the warm, stable, humid atmosphere of termite mounds, the perfect incubator.
  • Koalas, wallabies and kangaroos give birth to tiny young, which are naked and blind.

AUTUMN - March - May 

Pastures begin to green and waterways and catchments begin to flow. Autumn is a time of transition, with some rainfall gradually providing the wildlife with fresh growth to feed on.

  • Glossy Black cockatoos and Little Penguins begin nesting.
  • Black swans begin their courtship behaviour of wing-raising, neck-stretching and loud trumpeting.
  • Fungi start to appear on damp ground and rotting wood.

WINTER - June - August

Winter is spectacular with lush green countryside, flowing rivers and abundant wildlife: it's Kangaroo Island at its most appealing. Land mammals, predominantly night, dawn and dusk feeders for most of the year, frequently come out by day.

  • Koalas emerge from the mother's pouch and begin to ride on her back.
  • Kangaroo and wallaby joeys start to emerge from the mother's pouch and feed by her side.
  • Echidnas form 'mating trains' where up to eight males will follow a female for around four weeks.
  • Waders, on their migration from Siberia, begin to arrive.
  • Ospreys show off to their mates in spectacular courtship fights.
  • Southern right whales pass the shores on their migration from Antarctic waters to the Great Australian Bight to calve.

SPRING - September - November

Spring is the season of rebirth. It is a wonderful time to see the spectacular array of wild flowers, birds and mammals.

  • Wildflowers are in abundance. There are approximately 40 endemic floral species found on Kangaroo Island.
  • Eucalyptus oil is in peak production. One tonne of leaf can produce up to 30 litres of oil.
  • Cape Barren geese nest on top of the native iris grasses to incubate their eggs.
  • Platypuses lay two eggs in a burrow up to 20 metres long.

Weather Kangaroo Island - 5 Day Forecast