Geographical Range Australia
Habitat Plains, scrub, open woodlands, coastal heath, alpine pastures, semi-desert
Scientific Name Dromaius novaehollandiae
Conservation Status Common

Emus are large shaggy birds with loose double feathers that hang limply from their bodies. These large flightless birds have easily adapted to all types of Australian habitats, including woodlands, plains and even suburbs.

Females lay nine to 20 emerald-green eggs in spring, and the aggressive males incubate the eggs and rear the chicks. Chicks are striped with black, brown and cream, so they are well-camouflaged in long grass.

Emus eat fruit, flowers and insects, and will sometimes migrate great distances in search of food and water. These hardy birds have actually benefitted from the creation of watering holes for Australia's domestic livestock. In cereal-growing areas of the country, farmers even consider emus to be pests.

Did You Know?

Male emus are fully responsible for egg incubation and chick rearing.