Meet the Emus

Kimberlee Lyman, Staff Writer

At the Wildlife Safari there are five emus that have been in there since 2011. The oldest was born in 1993 and is 29 years old, and the youngest are two chicks from 2021.

The emu’s native habitat is Australia. Their main predators are dingoes and, for the chicks, hawks. Emus usually weigh 90-100 pounds and are 59-79 inches tall when fully grown. From just looking at them, you can’t really tell the gender. These fascinating animals are omnivores who eat things like grass, plants, fruit, and insects.

Emus usually get mistaken with ostriches and rheas that are really similar in appearance. You can spot the difference between emus and rheas or ostriches by looking for shaggy, gray-brown feathers on their body. Their neck and head are featherless and they have beady red eyes. Another thing you can look for is that ostriches have two toes and need little water while emus have three toes and drink 2-5 gallons of water a day!

They have long necks and legs and can run at speeds up to 30-31 MPH. Another fascinating thing about them is that emus have no teeth! They are also described as “the world’s dumbest birds” and one of the least intelligent birds.

In order to protect themselves, they almost always run away. When emus get scared at the Wildlife Safari, they will usually do laps around the park. Surprisingly, their most frequent cause of death in the wild is not from predators but vehicles.

If you want visit these captivating animals come down to the Wildlife safari today! You can find them in the drive through and, sometimes, in the Australian Walkabout in the Village. Remember, the village is always free to visit!