The Emu Is The Largest Bird Native To Australia And The Only Extant Member Of The Genus Dromaius. It Is The Second Largest Extant Bird In The World By Height After Its Ratite Relative The Ostrich.
The Soft – Feathered, Brown, Flightless Birds Reach Up to 2 Meters ( 6. 6 Ft ) In Height. They Have Long Thin Necks And Legs. Emus Can Travel Great Distances At A Fast, Economical Trot And, If Necessary, Can Sprint At 50 Km / H ( 31 Mph ). Their Long Legs Allow Them To Take Strides Of Up To 275 Centimeters ( 9. 02 Ft ). They Are Opportunistically Nomadic And May Travel Long Distances To Find Food, They Feed On A Variety Of Plants And Insects, But Have Been Known To Go For Weeks Without Food. Emus Ingest Stones, Glass Shards And Bits Of Metal To Grind Food In The Digestive System. They Drink Infrequently, But Take In Copious Fluids When The Opportunity Arises. Emus Will Sit In Water And Are Also Able To Swim. They Are Curious Birds Who Are Known To Follow And Watch Other Animals And Humans. Emus Do Not Sleep Continuously At Night But In Several Short Stints Sitting Down.
Emus Use Their Strongly Clawed Feet As A Defence Mechanism. Their Legs Are Among The Strongest Of Any Animal, Allowing Them To Rip Metal Wire Fences. They Are Endowed With Good Eyesight And Hearing, Which Allows Them To Detect Predators In The Vicinity. The Plumage Varies Regionally, Matching The Surrounding Environment And Improving Its Camouflage. The Feather Structure Prevents Heat From Flowing Into The Skin, Permitting Emus To Be Active During The Midday Heat. They Can Tolerate A Wide Range Of Temperatures And Thermo Regulate Effectively. Males and Females Are Hard To Distinguish Visually, But Can Be Differentiated By The Types Of Loud Sounds They Emit By Manipulating An Inflatable Neck Sac. Emus Breed In May And June And Are Not Monogamous; Fighting Among Females For A Mate Is Common. Females Can Mate Several Times And Lay Several Batches Of Eggs In One Season. The Animals Put On Weight Before The Breeding Season, And The Male Does Most Of The Incubation, Losing Significant Weight During This Time As He Does Not Eat. The Eggs Hatch After Around Eight Weeks, And The Young Are Nurtured By Their Fathers. They Reach Full Size After Around Six Months, But Can Remain With Their Family Until The Next Breeding Season Half A Year Later. Emus Can Live Between 10 And 20 Years In The Wild And Are Predated By Dingos, Eagles And Hawks. They Can Jump And Kick To Avoid Dingos, But Against Eagles And Hawks, They Can Only Run And Swerve.
Human Touch :
Emus Are Farmed Primarily For Their Meat, Leather, And Oil. Emu Meat Is A Low Fat Meat ( Less Than 1. 5% Fat ), And With Cholesterol At 85 mg / 100 g, It Is Comparable To Other Lean Meats. Most Of The Usable Portions ( The Best Cuts Come From The Thigh And The Larger Muscles Of The Drum Or Lower Leg ) Are Like Other Poultry, Dark Meat; Emu Meat Is Considered For Cooking Purposes By The USDA To Be A Red Meat Because Its Red Colour And pH Value Approximate That Of Beef, But For Inspection Purposes It Is Considered Poultry. Emu Fat Is Rendered To Produce Oil For Cosmetics, Dietary Supplements, And Therapeutic Products. The Oil Is Harvested From The Subcutaneous And Retroperitoneal Fat From The Macerated Adipose Tissue And Filtering The Liquefied Fat To Get The Oil, And Has Been Used By Indigenous Australians And The Early White Settlers For Purported Healing Benefits. The Oil Consists Mainly Of Fatty Acids; Oleic Acid ( 42% ), Linoleic And Palmitic Acids ( 21% Each ) Are The Most Prominent Components. It Also Contains Various Anti – oxidants, Notably Carotenoids And Flavones.