What are the sizes and average weight of an ostrich?
Ostriches are the world's largest flightless birds, which are also capable of developing high speed. Usually they live in groups of 5 to 30 individuals, fleeing predators. If flight is not possible, they can cause severe injuries with the claws of their powerful legs. In the world, ostriches are valued for their good egg production, skin and meat.
What are the average sizes of an ostrich
Ostriches are divided into 3 main breeds, which vary in color, size and lifestyle. Their growth starts from 1.5 m and can reach an impressive 2.5 m, and the mass varies from 30 to 170 kg. You can meet individuals weighing more than 230 kg, but these are isolated cases. The smallest ostriches are Australian (while African are the leaders in growth and mass).
Did you know? Ostrich wingspan can reach up to two meters. They use them as protection during the mating season.
The main breeds of ostriches and their weight
The most common are Australian, Somali and African ostriches. They differ significantly in their mass. The maximum mass of an African can reach 180 kg, the breed Somali ostrich reaches a mark of 160 kg and takes second place. The weight of an Australian ostrich is only 70 kg. You can find out about each of these breeds, how much they weigh at birth or in adulthood right now.
Australian breed (emu)
The smallest of the presented species of birds that inhabits Australia and coastal islands. The weight of the chick at birth is only 0.5 kg, the growth is not more than 13 cm. An adult can reach a mass of 70 kg. This species leads a nomadic lifestyle, daily traveling long distances in search of food. The average step length is 2.75 m.They have three toes on the leg, while other breeds have only two toes (thanks to this, individuals better use claws on their paws to protect or destroy the fence). They have very sharp eyesight and hearing, therefore it is difficult for predators to get close to them imperceptibly.
Due to the specific structure of the feathers, the emu were able to adapt to the unbearable heat, which allowed even actively searching for food during the scorching sun. The main diet for them is fruits, grass and crops. Farmers consider them the main pests of their crops, so they are actively engaged in their destruction.
Australian ostrich meat is very tasty, and butter is made from eggs. Emu ostriches are polygamous, so up to 25 eggs from different females can be in the pit. Only the male is engaged in hatching; during this time he eats practically nothing and is very aggressive. It is them we most often see in zoos, therefore their appearance is the most recognizable.
Important! During the hatching period of eggs, one cannot approach their nest. By protecting their offspring, they will injure you or even kill you.
Somali breed (gorajo)
This variety is significantly larger than the Australian in height and weight of an adult. As the name suggests, gorillo is most common in Somalia and southern Ethiopia. The weight of the chick is a little more than 1 kg, after four years the mass of an adult ostrich reaches 160 kg. It occupies an honorable second place in the list by height and weight.In the wild, live in packs that consist of a male and several females. Get along well with other herbivores. The stride length is much longer than his Australian relative (an average of 4 m). At the heart of their diet is plant food.
They can also feed on rodents, small animals and insects. Interestingly, this species can do without water and food for several days. This is very handy, given the area in which they live.
Unlike emu, the female and male are involved in hatching eggs in turn, laying up to 15 eggs. After 40-50 days, chicks appear, which rapidly gain weight over the next few months.
In the last century, goryayo were rapidly destroyed due to the poor economic situation in the country, their meat and eggs were sold by poachers.
African black breed (home)
It rightfully takes the first place in the nomination of the heaviest breed of ostriches with a result of 180 kg. Able to develop an incredible 70 km / h, which is the highest indicator among all breeds. The step length is about 4 m. Most often used by farmers for breeding at home.
Did you know? Very long eyelashes help ostriches Protect eyes from dust, wind and sunlight.
The weight of the chick is about 2 kg, its height is about 20 cm. Usually, the female lays up to 20 eggs, but in captivity this indicator can increase (from 40 to 100). Hatch eggs in turn: the female - during the day, the male - at night. The incubation period lasts 40-45 days.During the year, you can grow up to 40-50 chicks, each weighing about 100 kg. It is not surprising that it is home-breeding of ostriches that is considered to be a very profitable business. Food usually consists of a combination of feed, grass and hay.
Chicks after birth grow very quickly (1 cm every day). Upon reaching the mark of 150 cm, growth slows significantly. You need to be careful when caring for a domestic breed during the breeding season, as the male becomes very aggressive.
The skin of these birds, which is used to make various leather products, is very much appreciated. With one individual, you can get 1.5 sq.m. skin. In recent years, excursions to ostrich breeding farms have become very popular. Tourists willingly pay for the opportunity to see, stroke or feed this bird live.
Important! The blow of the ostrich's foot is strong enough (it can easily break a bone to a person). Be careful when approaching these flightless birds.
Features of the growth of ostriches
Regardless of the breed, all ostriches grow very quickly. So, from the beginning of hatching from an egg, when their mass is no more than 2 kg, and until they weigh 18-20 kg, only a few months pass. The mass of a one-year-old chick usually reaches 50% of the mass of an adult. Then their rapid growth slows down a bit. It takes 3 to 4 years to reach adult mass and height.
A separate category includes African ostrich, which is bred on farms. Its growth is even faster, which allows you to get a substantial income from the sale of meat and skin.Currently, entrepreneurial activities related to the breeding of ostriches are rapidly developing. They are bred not only for eggs or meat. Ostrich farms have long become a place of family relaxation. Since ostriches are used to living in countries with a hot climate, they are therefore not at all picky in terms of food, which facilitates their maintenance.