Getting emu's used to human contact?

Discussion in 'Ostriches, Emu, Rheas' started by JK Farms & Sanctuary, Jun 19, 2011.

  1. JK Farms & Sanctuary

    JK Farms & Sanctuary In the Brooder

    May 30, 2011
    Santa rosa
    Hi! I had a few questions about getting emu's used to human contact.

    I got my two at 2 weeks old, had them in the house for the first week and a half after getting them.
    Then I put them outside in the chicken pen, its about 20ftx6ft grassy area fenced around the coop. All the chickens are free-range so they just go tuck themselves in the coop at night and I have to catch the emu's and put them in there so nothing eats them and then let them all out again in the morning.
    I am hoping anyone could give me some suggestions on how to "tame" the emu's. They run (of course) but won't come up to me when I sit in the pen waiting for them to approach, and when I do have to catch them to put them in for the night, they scream and panic when I pick them up but will settle down once they feel supported and I fold their legs under them. They are not eating out of my hand either. Would it be more likely that they would become used to the contact as they get older? Right now they are still little guys at 4weeks so maybe as they mature they will get more playful and bouncy... since mine do not "play" as The Warden's emu's do...
    I work with a few pairs of emu's at different locations and they were not raised as chicks but are gentle enough to let you pet them and eat out of your hand... I'm thinking that as long as they are familiar with you, they will approach. I don't necessarily need to have a cuddly emu but I would like to be able to walk up to them as adults.

    Any input would help!!!

  2. chickenzoo

    chickenzoo Emu Hugger

    I would try to spend more 2 on one time with them in a smaller area. Try throwing grapes to them and try to get them to come sit by you. They go through a stage where it's the "don''t touch me stage"....
    just try to let them walk with you and spend time around you without other animals with them.
  3. Supreme Emu

    Supreme Emu Chirping

    Jun 8, 2010
    Hmmm . . .

    food is good leverage: whatever food at all that they get might come from your hand. Sit still hard by while they eat.

    I don't know that this thought is at all scientific: I talk to my emus all the time.

    Don't forget it takes a lot of patience. For example, before they come up to you to take food from your hand while you're sitting, lie on the ground, flat and still, with some food in your open palm.

    Try to generally stay rather more at their head height.

    Supreme Emu

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