Emu and Ostrich

Struthio camelus & Dromaius novaehollandiae

Members of a group of flightless, running Birds (called ratites) that includes the Ostrich, Kiwi and Emu.  The Ostrich has long and very strong legs, adapted for rapid running; only two toes with a long neck, nearly bare of feathers; and short wings incapable of flight. The adult male grows to about  eight feet high.   Ostrich primarily lay their 10 pound eggs in the summer.  Males are responsible for the nest and incubating the eggs.

The Emu is a large Australian flightless running bird similar to the ostrich but smaller.  They lay dark green eggs and are primarily seasonal laying their eggs from November-March.  The incubation time on an emu is 52 days whereas the ostrich is 42 days.  Both species can lay 20-40 eggs in a given season.

 Interesting Facts:

¨ Males are called cocks, Females are called hens.

¨ The ostrich does not hide their head in the sand - to avoid being seen they lay their heads on the ground.

¨ Emus are the only birds with calf muscles.

¨ The emu has a pouch in its windpipe that is used for communication.

¨ Emu are monogamous.