There are once again Australian additions to the Debrecen Zoo’s collection as, on July 9, they welcomed two young emus from Zoo Košice, Slovakia.
For now, the little male and female have their own enclosure on the institution’s Australia Trail. Currently four months old, they look like miniature versions of adults but they thrive very nicely and will reach their adult size by their first birthday.
Native to much of Australia, emus (Dromaius novaehollandiae) are the second largest extant bird species today, with a height of 150 to 190 cm and a weight of 30 to 60 kg. Feeding on various plant parts, fruits and arthropods alike, they also swallow small stones to help them grind their food in the gizzard. Thanks to being well adapted to living in dry steppes and bushlands, they can survive without water for several days.
They form pairs or groups within which males are exclusively responsible for hatching and rearing chicks. Considered one of the most iconic members of Australia’s unique fauna, this robust ratite is even included in the country’s coat of arms. With the acquisition of these youngsters, the Debrecen Zoo will hopefully report on successful egg-laying and hatching in the future.
Source: Debrecen Zoo Press Release