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Birds: Emu

We saw the adult Emu at the Port Douglas Wildlife Park, in Queensland, Australia.  The park ranger guide said to us:

“The Emu shares one quality with the Kangaroo: neither one can move backwards.  They only move forward, never bounding or walking backwards; which is the reason why Australians selected them both as symbols for our Aussie Coat of Arms.” 

Interesting remark, though I cannot guarantee its authenticity.  We only saw the Emus walking forward and they were quite large and intimidating to our daughters, so we did not confront them and challenge their path to see if our interruption would make them walk backwards or turn around. We decided to take the guide’s word for it.

Third largest flightless bird, the emu is behind only the ostrich and cassowary in size and ferocity. It is not seen as an aggressive bird, though it can be intimidating when protecting its young.

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Juvenile Emu

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Australian Coat of Arms

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