Eat and Pooh at Night?

Tame Emu Guy

7 Years
Feb 26, 2012
Southwest Western Australia
Please: for my research:

Yes/no – do emus defecate six or eight times a night?
Yes/no – do they eat six or eight times a night?

‘[The emu] may rise up to eight times during the night for the purposes of defecating and feeding’
Academic paper, ‘The Sleep of the Emu,’ 1960, Immelmann
I would say yes to a wild animal that must graze for it's food. not one of our captive birds that get fed pounds of feed at a time . But by looking at the nightly nest area of my small flock they are most certainly craping their brains out all night. I don't think their eyesight is that great in the nighttime. I have tripped over them in the pasture and they were as freaked out about it as I was. Instead of running off they will just flop back down. That could be just a , well he's no predator , type thing.
My guess would be yes and maybe.

I greatly appreciate your response. This is a case in which your experience -- that is, pet-bird owners -- is what I need to draw on. With respect to Immelmann, I don't think that wild birds get up and go to feed six or eight times a night:

A: they seem to roost in islands of 'starvation scrub', therefore,

B: that would mean that they have to move at night to the pastures to access feed. Eight trips is sixteen 'legs' of travel -- what? on a moonless night?

I feel it is reasonable, moreover, to ask why and academic who lives in Perth would provide data from birds in a zoo in Germany rather than drive down here, and undertake the observations here.

Supreme Emu
Gerry will leave between 4-8 piles a night, he'll sit up and stretch out behind himself without standing up to do his business then flop forward and away from it. Perhaps wild Emu do feed at night in hard times when they haven't met their 'quota' of feeding during the day, but to get up at night and move around just seems like a way to attract the attention of something that has better night vision than you.
this is great!!

I agree wholeheartedly with your logic: emus aren’t nocturnal, and stumbling around in the dark only seems likely to attract more trouble than the food gained would be worth.

My ‘pivot point’ here, guys is the notion that

A: food in one end; poop out the other.

B: got plenty of food, will eat plenty of food.

C: therefore:

One: captive birds may be pooping plentifully because they can and do eat plentifully at night (??).

Two: wild birds aren’t pooping plentifully at night because they aren’t eating at night (at least not generally).

I see four, five, six, seven, eight poops at a roost – but those roosts are used more often than once. The feathers there are mixed right into the litter on the ground. Nine out of ten roosts so far have been, so to speak, 'in the same spot,' that is, in some shelter -- a stand of trees -- just next to a decent pasture.

Please do not hesitate to knock this logic to bits. I’m concerned only to learn.

Supreme Emu
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Well I can confirm he doesn't eat at night because there's no food available for him at night, especially right now. Fall has claimed all edible plant life leaving evergreens and dead leaves, a recent frost killed off about 90% of the insects that haven't buried themselves underground and I don't leave food out in case of rain, it'd just get soggy and need to be thrown out in the morning.

What you should look for is a cluster of droppings, especially ones that haven't splattered which indicates the Emu was sitting at the time instead of standing.

However, a wild Emu may not be going to bed on a full stomach, when Gerry wakes up in the morning he's clearly running on empty and never has a full bowel movement, just urates and liquid waste, a wild Emu might leave similar sign after just one or two leavings.


okay: even without night-time feeds, emus can poop plentifully!! (?)
I see ‘sitting poohs,’ Raptor, not ‘standing poohs’ – good point.
Wild birds go to bed with as full a stomach as they ever have. They graze until literally a minute of retiring to roost. They begin grazing in the morning even before you it’s light enough to read a newspaper – they step straight out on to their pasture, and start grazing.

Thank you for taking this seriously. To refresh:

This Whole Poop Investigation is part of my trying to determine the birds’ general movement patterns (and figuring out the overall quality of emu-info on the Net).

The overall movement thing tells us a great deal about the birds’ diets and pecking-order dynamics (and tendency to flock tee hee hee . . . ).

Hopefully, this will eventually translate to helping those with pet birds and non-wild breeders to be better able to house, and mix-and-match, and breed, and feed your birds. (Gonna take years but . . . )

Check the photo above. It was taken in the 'island of scrub' at the 'back of Oudman's' -- by the National Park. We spoke of the piles of blessings in this same spot in the winter-thread. Look carefully at the colour of the blessings, and their age. (It's clear ,when you look at them, that they are one- and two- and more-days old. It's quite clear.) So, it seems that the blessings were deposited at a rate of one a night.

All conclusions absolutely interim -- more data!!

(I must rest. I've been fasting for days, and my brain just isn't working.)

Supreme Emu
My Emu don't move.around at night unless they are disturbed. They normal ly plop down in there sleeping spot for the night till morning.. If offered food T at night they mostly turn it down. Can say about the poo as I have soany animals its gone by the time it.hits.the ground.
Emu poo
My eldest Emu pair 4 years old sleep in an open shed, (their choice) on a strawbed and face each other at night, in most cases they Poo right after the main meal of the day, outside just before sunset, veggies and fruit etc...and go in a corner far away,to disgard their daily intake, occasionally if heavy rain at dinner time they both leave POO in corners either end in house...nice one lol..NEVER in their bed.

They never come out night time, unless they hear strange noises, like me checking on them, they soon come rushing out, thinking there was an intruder, slim chance, they might go away with a broken leg lol My frontdoor is only a few feet away from their gate.
They really guard me and each time I go in, they beg for a stroke or cuddle.
They have food ad-lib in other half of building, the dining room, eating / browsing during day and sleep nights...well trained babies lol even as little chicks they went in corner far away as they could in their 6ft run in my computer room.
That may be different, if not kept in captivity of course or even bought as chicks.
Hope this helps !
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