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Scientific Name: 

Struthio camelus

Conservation Status:
Common

Where to see them:
African Plains

Fun Facts:

  • The ostrich is the world’s largest bird species.
  • Ostrich can run up to 40 miles per hour.
  • Ostrich are the only birds with just two toes on their feet.

Ostrich

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Size
Height is 6 to 7 feet; weight is 150 to 300 pounds.

Range
Sub-Saharan Africa

Habitat
Desert, arid areas, savanna

Lifestyle
Ostrich tend to live alone or in small groups. Larger congregations may occur around limited resources such as water; however, individuals or smaller groups wander in and out. Ostrich are generally nomadic. They often feed with other grazing mammals, and their height and incredible eyesight makes them useful as sentinels.

Food
Ostrich consume mostly vegetation, seeds and some small insects but will take the occasional small vertebrate, lizard, etc.

Life Cycle
Males and females both incubate and help in rearing young. Several females may lay their eggs in a male’s nest, but usually only the male and the initial female will rear the young. Chicks leave the nest between 3-5 days of age and will remain with the male and female until 4-5 months of age, at which point chicks from other birds in the surrounding area are brought together to form a crèche. The crèche is taken over by the dominant birds, and other adults leave the rest of the rearing to the dominant birds.  These crèches remain together for approx nine months. Chicks reach sexual maturity around 2 years of age and can live 30 years in captivity.

Some of My Neighbors (IN THE WILD)
Gazelle, giraffe, lion

Population Status & Threats
Common