Emu Facts

Emu Facts
Emu is the second largest bird on the planet (after ostrich) and the largest bird in Australia, where it lives. It prefers life in woodlands, scrublands, grasslands and forests. Emu is a flightless bird whose ancestors lived at the same time as dinosaurs. They share certain anatomical features, such as bones and ankles, with dinosaurs. Three species of emus existed in the past, but two had been hunted to extinction. People hunt emu because of its feather, meat and fat.
Interesting Emu Facts:
Emu is very large bird. Females are slightly larger. Emu reaches between 5 and 6.5 feet in height. It can weigh up to 130 pounds.
Emu has long neck, sharp beak and small ears. Its body is covered with light-brown feathers. Each feather has a double shaft. Emu has small wings which provide stability during running.
Emu has two eyelids. One eyelid is used for blinking, while other prevents dust and sand to enter the eyes.
Emu has three toes on each foot. Their legs are strong and built for running. Also, they use legs for kicking the predators when faced with danger.
Emu requires water on a daily basis. During cold weather, they recycle air in the nasal passages for creating the moisture that can be used.
Unlike water, emu can survive long periods without food. It stores fat that is used as a source of energy when the food is scarce.
Emu is an omnivore (eats both plants and animals). It likes to eat caterpillars, large insects, small lizards, rodents, flowers, seed, buds and shoots.
Emu swallows small rocks and pebbles to facilitate grinding of food and accelerate digestion.
Emus are usually solitary animals, but they sometimes travel in pair. Emu can gather in flocks when large quantity of food is available.
Emu is a fast running animal. It can reach 30 miles per hour.
Emu is also excellent swimmer. It can easily cross the river while looking for food and new feeding areas. Emu can travel thousands of miles each year.
Emu mates during summer and lays eggs during cooler months. Female lays between 8 and 10 eggs. Since the eggs are large, female lays one egg every 2 to 3 days.
Eggs are dark green in color, have thick shell and weight of around one pound. Male sits on eggs during the next 8 weeks, until they are ready to hatch. During that time, male does not eat but uses stored fats as a source of energy.
Emu chicks are active as soon as they hatch. Their body is covered with stripes of brown and creamy-colored soft feathers that provide camouflage. After three months, their plumage starts looking like feathers of adult animals.
Emu can survive between 5 and 10 years in the wild.

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