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About Emu

This bird is a large, long-legged flightless bird with very small wings and long, loose, double feathers. Plumage fades from almost black to grayish-brown, with whitish ruff at base of neck; skin of face and neck blue; legs dark grayish-brown; bill blackish; eyes yellow, grayish-brown or reddish.

They breed during southern winter from April to November. Their nest is a platform or circle of leaves, grass, bark or sticks on the ground or under a bush or a tree. The female will lay 5-11 eggs, which are dark grayish-green, incubated by the male alone for 56 days. The male will take care of the chicks for about 18 months. The female may stay close or wander off to find another male.

The Emu is almost as big as the ostrich, but with a lot smaller wings. The Emu has a very similar lifestyle in the open forests, scrub, and dry grasslands of its native Australia. It feeds with a great deal of selectively on good food items, including insects and other small animals. Such food can be scarce in the arid regions, and flocks of Emus wander a wide and vast distance across the continent in search of food.

Emus must drink every day. This prevents them from living on the drier grasslands, but the provision of water supplies for sheep and other livestock has allowed them to extend their range across most of the continent.

The breeding is reversed with Emus with the female guarding the nest and the male incubating them.

Nomadic flocks of Emus will follow erratic rainstorms to feed on plants sprouting from the wet ground, using a highly developed instinct for tracking rain clouds and other weather patterns.