Emus & Cassowaries

Casuariidae

Like the ostriches both the Emu Dromaius novaehollandiae and the Southern Cassowary Casuarius casuarius lack a keel on the sternum, have loose barbless feathers and are both flightless. They also have large powerful legs and lack a hind toe, but the feet differ from those of the ostriches by having three forward-facing toes. The Emu is endemic to Australia, and is represented today only on the mainland. Emus on Tasmania, King Island and Kangaroo Island are extinct. Cassowaries in Australia are confined to north-eastern Qld, but are also found in New Guinea.

Emu

Emu

What does it look like? Adult emus are grey brown with black streaks. The head and most of the neck is covered in thin black feathers. The sides of the face and the neck are plain with a pale blue to bluish grey streak. Juveniles are striped with black and white when first hatched but after a few weeks become a dull brown. Where does it live?  Emus are found over almost all of Australia, except ...
Southern Cassowary

Southern Cassowary

What does it look and sound like?  The prominent greyish casque and red wattle hanging from the neck, make the Southern Cassowary easily identifiable. The feathers of the body are black and hair-like, becoming more rufous toward the tail. The bare skin of the head and fore-neck is blue, while the hind-neck is red. The female is generally taller than the male and has a taller casque. Calls consist ...