We Aussies are used to seeing our boxing kangaroos showing their fighting skills, but a viral video of a man taking down an aggressive kangaroo with his bare hands has left even us stunned – and the man with nasty injuries.
The footage captured from a home security camera last week and uploaded to social media shows Heathcote, Victoria resident Cliff Des wrestling with a 6 foot buck kangaroo in his backyard.
The kangaroo chases after Cliff, who slips and falls on the wet grass. The kangaroo jumps on Cliff’s back then turns around and starts to attack Cliff again, who gets up and does his best to defend himself and fight it off.
It’s funny in an “only in Australia” kind of way, especially with “Land Down Under” playing over the top, but it’s also scary.
The video ends with Cliff tackling the roo to the ground.
But this short clip doesn’t tell the full story of the ordeal nor the seriousness of what happened to Cliff next.
Cliff had a chat to us about the incident, which has left him shaken up even a week later. As the YouTube video description says: “Do your research on kangaroo attacks before you judge. This attack was unprovoked!!”
Cliff said the attack happened after he heard his Staffy dogs barking in their fenced off area and went to investigate. He saw the kangaroo trying to get to the dogs through the fence.
He said he’s used to kangaroos hanging around, but this was one was acting different. “It was in a fighting mood,” Cliff explained. “It was gunning for trouble.”
And as soon as the roo saw Cliff, it went after him.
“You can’t outrun a roo”
The dogs can be seen barking behind the fence unable to help their owner as Cliff fights with the kangaroo. He landed on a stick and used it to fight off the kangaroo but it “broke like a carrot in my hands”.
Cliff said fighting with the animal was his only option. “You can’t outrun a roo,” he said. “It doesn’t matter who you are.”
Cliff said his martial arts and boxing background allowed him to get the kangaroo off balance, but even he admitted it was a tough slog given he’s nearly 60.
Once Cliff got the roo to the ground, he spent another five minutes wrestling with it as it got tangled up around him and kept swiping at hime with its sharp claws.
The roo gouged Cliff’s head, made a 4 centimetre deep gash in the back of his leg, bit his finger and left him with a sore back from when it jumped on him.
Eventually Cliff broke free from the roo and ran around to the side of his other car for protection, but the roo followed and stood and growled at him for a good 30 seconds. Then the cranky roo turned back toward the dogs and starting going at them a bit more before giving up and hopping away towards the nearby creek.
Cliff said it could’ve been worse had it been someone else the roo attacked, like his wife or some of the elderly residents, women or children who walk past their house every day. “It happened to be me, which was fortunate,” he said. “But I’m not a hero, far from it.”
Cliff explained that he and his wife Kaz have lived in the area for 30 years and are used to kangaroos being on their lawns and it’s normal and natural but they respect them and stay wary. “They’re a wild animal, people should keep away from them,” Cliff said.