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RE: emu encounters

The only experience I've had with emus has been at a
sanctuary for abandoned birds that kept a large flock
of them. The adults were quite happy to stay out of
our way as we walked around in their paddock, while
the young (kept in a seperate enclosure) wouldn't stop
trying to eat the buttons off of my jacket! I suppose
most people are simply not used to being approached by
large birds, especially those who don't seem to fear
you or think it improper to shove you around a little.
The ostrich kept at this sanctuary was an entirely
different story, the owner urged us to stay a good
distance even from the fence, due to its habit of
biting and charging.

One thing I found very interesting about the birds is
their ability to communicate by producing a low
drumming sound in their chest cavities. The males tend
to do that the most. Perhaps a method of vocalization
for large-bodied therizinosaurs? Fun to speculate.


--- Nancy Cavanaugh <nancy@lillypadsoftware.com>
> >From what I've read emu are pretty docile unless
> they think their nests
> are being disturbed. I did read one account where a
> woman who had 5 or 6
> on her farm was far from pleased with them, as were
> the other animals on
> the farm, and found them to not be the friendly,
> docile creatures she'd
> heard about. The poor emu ended up being chopped up
> and made into
> various meat products.
> Nancy
> -----Original Message-----
> From: owner-dinosaur@usc.edu
> [mailto:owner-dinosaur@usc.edu] On Behalf
> Of zone65@bigpond.com
> Looks like I'm lucky to have survived my encounter!
> But I understand  
> it's only the cassowary that's known to eviscerate
> humans. My  
> father-in-law was recently approached by one up in
> far north Queensland
> as he was fishing. He slowly packed up and got out
> of there. The birds  
> probably only attack if they perceive a threat to
> their nest or young.  
> It's bad enough being swooped by a nesting magpie!
> Peter M

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