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Doug J | all galleries >> Birds, Birds, Birds >> Non-passeriformes Gallery > Emus, guarding the eggs
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Emus, guarding the eggs

Emus, guarding the eggs

Scientific name: Dromaius novaehollandiae
Order: Struthioniformes

A flightless bird (Ratite) there is only one species of Emu, which is the worlds 3rd largest bird behind the Ostrich and Cassowary. Emus are very mobile quick runners (up to 50 kph), running with a bouncy, swaying motion. Emus are generally nomadic, with some emus roaming over hundreds of kilometers.

Emus are covered with long, thick, drooping feathers that are dark brown to grey-brown which appears shaggy.Their heads though have shorter "downy" feathers, pointy beak, large bright looking eyes and often a blue throat. Emus are found throughout Australia from Woods to scrubland to grassland to desert areas but not in Rainforests

The Emu feeds mainly on green herbage like grass, flowers, seeds etc, but they also eat insects (e.g. grasshoppers).

Emus pair up for breeding once they are about 2 years old. The female lays the dark green eggs (5 to 20 eggs) on the 1 meter wide nest which is built of grass and weeds on the ground by the male
The eggs are incubated by the male for 8 weeks. During this period the male rarely leaves the nest, surviving on a layer of fat he built up prior to nesting.

Click for more information on this species at Wikipedia
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comment
Shdwfeather 11-Jun-2007 22:58
Awww, that's a touching picture.