Clueless about emu but INTRIGUED

TMarie

Songster
6 Years
Feb 28, 2013
90
51
136
Why don't many people have emu?
Why are the eggs for eating so expensive?
I assume the females lay without a male?
Are they picky about how many of each gender live together?
Can they co-exist with other species?
Are they dangerous even if raised from babies?
Is there a market for the eggs?
I love that they lay when other breeds stop for the season. Seems great for supplementing in winter. Am I wrong?
Thank you!!
 

Peepsi

Songster
Apr 1, 2017
440
1,520
222
Utah
Why don't many people have emu?
Why are the eggs for eating so expensive?
I assume the females lay without a male?
Are they picky about how many of each gender live together?
Can they co-exist with other species?
Are they dangerous even if raised from babies?
Is there a market for the eggs?
I love that they lay when other breeds stop for the season. Seems great for supplementing in winter. Am I wrong?
Thank you!!
I don't know much about emu, but my guess as to why many people don't have them boils down to this:

1) They're HUGE! That's a lot of poop, a lot of food, a lot of space needed. Most people don't have the land or money needed to keep them. Those that do have the land and money may find chickens, ducks, geese easier to care for. Plus, emus like other emus, so you'll want at least two, which means two huge birds and double the poop.

2) They're HUGE. That means when they get mad and decide to kick you, they have to power to literally break your bones or disembowel you. I mean, if someone's 2 ft tall roo gets irate, the most a person may suffer is a severely stabbed hand or broken finger. If an emu gets irate, they can literally kill you.

I've been curious about owning emu before, and would be eager to do it, but I have no land. My backyard is 30' x 30', barely enough for my four chickens, let alone an 80 pound beast of a bird and the hundreds and hundreds of pounds of poop it must produce each year.

So that's my guess as to why many people don't have them. Kinda like how many chicken owners are backyard chicken owners who can just have chickens, dogs and cats and the like, and NOT any actual large livestock like horses or cows....or emus.
 

TMarie

Songster
6 Years
Feb 28, 2013
90
51
136
Very good points! I do have kids so I wouldn't want anything that dangerous They just look so fun and sweet in the youtube videos
Thank you for the info!


I don't know much about emu, but my guess as to why many people don't have them boils down to this:

1) They're HUGE! That's a lot of poop, a lot of food, a lot of space needed. Most people don't have the land or money needed to keep them. Those that do have the land and money may find chickens, ducks, geese easier to care for. Plus, emus like other emus, so you'll want at least two, which means two huge birds and double the poop.

2) They're HUGE. That means when they get mad and decide to kick you, they have to power to literally break your bones or disembowel you. I mean, if someone's 2 ft tall roo gets irate, the most a person may suffer is a severely stabbed hand or broken finger. If an emu gets irate, they can literally kill you.

I've been curious about owning emu before, and would be eager to do it, but I have no land. My backyard is 30' x 30', barely enough for my four chickens, let alone an 80 pound beast of a bird and the hundreds and hundreds of pounds of poop it must produce each year.

So that's my guess as to why many people don't have them. Kinda like how many chicken owners are backyard chicken owners who can just have chickens, dogs and cats and the like, and NOT any actual large livestock like horses or cows....or emus.
 

Peepsi

Songster
Apr 1, 2017
440
1,520
222
Utah
Very good points! I do have kids so I wouldn't want anything that dangerous They just look so fun and sweet in the youtube videos
Thank you for the info!
I hope you can get some answers from actual emu owners as well! Perhaps you could join an emu forum, where you are guaranteed that emu owners will see your post. I know there has to be emu owners here on BYC, but the percentage of them is much lower than the percentage of people who own chickens or ducks, so it's less likely that many of them will see your post. I agree, emu do *look* sweet in those videos! Good luck on finding out more about them.
 

FortCluck

Purple Minion Wrangler
Sep 9, 2019
10,420
42,147
937
Central Virginia
My grandfather owned ostriches and I guess I can speak about emus a little bit.

Many people do not have emus or ostriches because they can be dangerous animals. They can kill you with a kick. This is why you need to be very experienced in owning them and do your research. They also can get very expensive because you have to by large quantities of food and when they go to the bathroom it's not small. When the ostriches would go to the bathroom it would sound like a toilet flushing! I do believe that emus are a lot friendlier than ostriches, but my grandfather was quite the animal whisperer.

Their eggs are expensive because they are so huge. If you look at one of their eggs you could fit about $50 worth of chicken eggs in it. when my grandfather sold ostrich eggs to restaurants and ostrich meat, he was getting about $50 per egg and $500 or more for the meat.

There are some animals that they can coexist with other animals, but I wouldn't put them with any type of smaller bird like a chicken or a duck.

I do believe that you have to have a certain mixture of males to females and I think it is one male to two or three females from what I remember with my grandfather's ostriches.

I don't think that anyone should be buying an emu or an ostrich unless they do their research. I would suggest going to a local farm near you that has them so that you can get more information on them and actually be next to them. They can be quite intimidating because of their size. I'm thinking about getting emus in the future.

Someone who has small kids would really have to work on teaching their children how to appropriately handle or be around the emus.

It is best to get them when they are young and it's even better to hatch them yourself. When my grandfather would incubate ostrich eggs he would always handle the babies so that they would get used to him and he would continue handling them throughout their entire life so that he never had any type of conflict with them.
 

Chicken Heel

Songster
Jun 8, 2019
261
792
121
I had an Emu back in the late 1990's. She showed up one day at my chicken lot and decided to stay around. I placed an ad in the local paper about the stray Emu but no one claimed her. I named her Maybelline and she was a sweetheart and never showed any signs of aggression. About a year later, she broke through the fence and took off on another adventure to parts unknown. I have always assumed she longed for a companion Emu and left to find one.
 

Kusanar

Crowing
5 Years
Apr 30, 2014
2,135
4,145
336
Roanoke area, Va.
Also, depending on your area, they may be considered exotic and not allowed or dangerous which would require a permit. Where I am, both Emu and Ostrich are allowed but the Ostrich are "dangerous animals" and require permitting, specific fencing (per the law), and a decent insurance policy in case they hurt someone.

Also, because they are birds, they are vulnerable at night so you would need to lock them in or have some sort of guard animal out with them.
 

Peepsi

Songster
Apr 1, 2017
440
1,520
222
Utah
Emu's are not sweet. Their talons can disembowel you. They can be quite aggressive. And they are HUGE. They are still primarily a wild bird, not a domesticated one & in the wild they run in large flocks so just keeping 1 or 2 isn't really kind.
Exactly. Like I already said in my post: "They're HUGE. That means when they get mad and decide to kick you, they have to power to literally break your bones or disembowel you. I mean, if someone's 2 ft tall roo gets irate, the most a person may suffer is a severely stabbed hand or broken finger. If an emu gets irate, they can literally kill you."
 
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