Range: Central and Southern Africa
Life Span: 30- 40 years
Height: 6-9 feet
Weight: 200-300 pounds
Egg size: about 3 pounds
The Ostrich is the largest living bird and the second fastest animal in the world. Although it can’t fly, the ostrich can make 12-foot strides and run at a sustained speed of 30 mph for 15 minutes or more. Both young and adult ostriches hide by sitting with their heads and necks stretched out on the ground. This practice may have given rise to the erroneous belief that ostriches bury their heads in the sand. The male usually makes the nest, and all females lay their eggs in that location. Both sexes incubate the eggs. The dominant female, with her light colored feathers, will sit on the nest and incubate during the day, while a male bird, with its dark feathers, incubates from late afternoon to early morning. Ostrich eggs are larger than those of any other living creatures. They can be 6 inches long and 5 inches wide, have a shell 5-6 inches thick, and weigh up to 3.5 lbs.
Range: South American (Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Paraguay, Perú, Uruguay)
Life Span: 15 years
Height: 5.5 feet
Weight: 80-90 pounds
Wingspan: 8 feet
Rheas have three toes instead of two, which is unique to the Ratites family. Like all members of the large flightless bird family, males build the nest, allow multiple females to lay eggs then the male will incubate and raise the chicks.
Range: Australia, New Guinea, Indonesia, Solomon Islands, and Philippines
Life Span: 10-20 years (captivity) 35 years (wild)
Height: 5-6 feet
Weight: 70-100 pounds
Emus’ eggs are dark green and will typically be laid in a clutch of eight to ten by the females then incubated and raised by the male. These large flightless birds are known for using their legs in defense by kicking predators.