The Australian Outback can be a lonely place, but a male kangaroo and his female pig companion appear to have found a solution.Photographs of the two animals show they are extremely intimate friends, and the farmer who owns the pig says they have been in a relationship for a year.
Sydney-based PhD candidate Ryan Frazer said he found the couple getting very cosy as he passed by a paddock in Aileron, near Alice Springs in the Northern Territory, during a research trip.
He took a series of photographs, which show the kangaroo at first cuddling up to the female pig - whose name is Apples - placing his paws on both sides of the animal while crouched in front of her - as if they two animals were hugging. There were also two geese in the paddock, and one watched on from up close.
After a few minutes, the kangaroo 'worked himself up and went for it', Mr Frazer said.
'I didn't even know it was possible,' he told Daily Mail Australia.
'The animals saw us ... we met them at the fence and they just stood together in front of us.
'The kangaroo was ripped, a bit aggressive, huffing a bit. But the pig stayed with him, nuzzling under his arm, and the kangaroo was hugging the pig for a while.'
Mr Frazer said he and his colleague were 'bewildered by the affection' the animals had for another, as they nuzzled for a few minutes.
'Then the kangaroo started hugging the pig from behind, worked himself up a bit and went for it,' he said.
'The pig was totally nonchalant about the whole thing, was not concerned at all.
'We were just standing there like, "this is strange. Should we still be standing here, watching, taking photos"?
'When the kangaroo finished, the pig tried to jump on the back of the kangaroo for a bit, maybe to reciprocate... that's when we decided we'd had enough.'
The entire affair last for about five or 10 minutes.