Latin name: Dromaius
size: 1.2 - 1.5m
mass: up to 50kg
Older: up to 20 years
Appearance: brown, gray and black plumage possible
Nutrition type: Herbivore (herbivor) / Fruiteater (frugivor)
food: Fruits, leaves, grass, seeds
original origin: Australia
Sleep-wake rhythm: diurnal
habitat: preferably open grasslands
natural enemies: Dingo, fox
sexual maturity: about the age of three
mating season: November - January
breeding season: 55 - 60 days
clutch size: 10 - 25 eggs
social behavior: Family Association
Threatened with extinction: No
Further profiles of animals can be found in the Encyclopaedia.
Interesting about the Emu
- The Emu or Dromaius novaehollandiae is a flightless ratite whose habitat is limited to Australia. Once there were two other subspecies in addition to the Emu, which have been extinct for over 150 years. Thus, the emu is today the only living species of its genus.
- Emus are widespread in Australia, with the exception of the eastern coast and some densely forested areas in the north, and sometimes near human settlements. They prefer to live in open grasslands, dry deserts and eucalyptus forests.
- Emus have also been bred on farms in their home country for about three decades, because both their meat and their eggs, their skin and feathers are commercially exploited and processed.
- The majority of the day Emus spend as a loner looking for food. They are not localized omnivores that feed mainly on grass, fruits, berries, leaves, seeds and herbs, but do not disdain various insects and molluscs.
- In the course of long hikes, when food shortages occur, emus join together in huge groups of several thousand animals and roam the countryside together to develop new food sources. In these migrations Emus should be guided by the weather, because they generally move to where they locate precipitation areas.
- Emus become about one and a half meters tall and can reach a maximum weight of 50 kilograms.
- In the case of the emus, the females are significantly larger and heavier than the males.
- Their tiny wings are only between ten and twenty inches long and are largely useless. For this reason, emus are the only birds in the world to have pronounced muscles on the calves, allowing them to jump over two meters.
- Striking is the plumage of the emus, which is more reminiscent of hair on the head than on feathers. This is due to the fact that the feathers of the Emu do not grow from their own roots, as with other birds, but hang from two quills. The loosely arranged, brown-gray patterned plumage on the hull looks a bit like shaggy fur and protects the bird during the day from the strong UV radiation.
- As with the Ostrich, the distant relative of Emus, the male also takes care of the eggs and the brood in these birds. After the black-and-white-striped chicks hatch and leave the nest, they remain in the immediate vicinity of their father for about six months, caring for them with devotion.
- Many young emus fall victim to birds of prey, foxes and dingoes in the first years of life.
- Emus are about twenty years old in the wild, their life expectancy is much higher in captivity.
- In addition to the kangaroo, emus are considered to be an important national animal in Australia, which is named after localities, mountains and waters as well as foods, beers and magazines.