Describing Your Emu

Tame Emu Guy

7 Years
Feb 26, 2012
Southwest Western Australia
Suppose you lost your emu at the mall?

You’d go to Centre Magangement, and say, ‘I’ve lost my emu!!’ Then, what if the Nice Lady there said, ‘What does she look like, this emu?’

Here’s a little exercise: describe your birds:

Sandy colour or dark?

Any pattern on the body feathers?

Neck and head? Blue skin? Neat ‘collar’ of feathers?

Droopy toosh? Sparse toosh?

Distinguishing marks?

Shorter and heavier build? Or taller and skinnier?

Profile: Felicity Emu:
Four-year-old female rothschildi.
Just a little small. A scruffy person, generally.
Has what looks like light blue paint on her beak. It’s always been there. S.E. has no idea.
Has ‘classical’ salt-and-pepper feathers.
Neat white ‘collar’ of neck feathers. S.E. still trying to figure out if the collar changes configuration from season to season. (Any insights on this one?)
Has funny little ‘topknot’ of feathers on her head.
Got the ‘shaggier’ feather suit that S.E. thinks is characteristic of the rothschildi – she’s only slightly this way, in comparison to other birds around here; but still noticeably shaggier than a woodwardi.

Personality: is sooky about her food. Won't eat some things that other emus scoff up.

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"Here's a little exercise, describe your birds..."

Right now they are dark green and oval shaped

That was a very interesting question though. I have only seen emus at the zoo and right now they all look the same to me. But I'm sure if you know the birds personally they look very different.

We have some hand-raised starlings in our aviary.The neighbor found them as naked chicks "slow-roasting" in a parking lot.
They are ~ 4 years old now, talking, and thriving. (It's OK to keep starlings as pets here in MD because they aren't native birds). I used to wonder how anyone could tell starlings apart, since they all look like clones of each other. But, not true! There are some very obvious differences -- one lost a back toe in an accident -- and one is so tame that she tries to crawl under your shirt. But there's subtle differences too. One always holds his head feathers angled out (like the "triangular head" display in zebra finches). Another is always a little nervous and so he looks much "thinner". Their vocalizations and food preferences are different, too. I can tell them apart pretty well (at least, when they're holding still
Hi, Avie.

Yup. It works wonderfully. I know nothing about birds in general. Zip. Nada. But I live in a faraway farmhouse, and have tamed two emus, and can observe others. The other BYC folk provide all manner of details that I can’t easily get here, like details of matings and the chicks.

Indeed, I was fascinated to see personality develop in my birds, and the details of the starlings’ personalities is good data. Thank you.

I solved the ‘sitting still’ problem with a pair of binoculars.

Supreme Emu
Western Australia
Once I get some good pics of my oldest birds I'll post them and fill in all the details..but the 4 oldest birds are very easy for my husband and me to tell apart.. (my husband was gone for almost 6 months to Afghanistan and could still tell them all apart when he got back!)

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