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November 25, 2021

Those Cassowaries

Cassowary (singular) and cassowaries (plural) is the genus Casuarius, so-called flightless birds native to tropical forests of Australia, parts of Indonesia, and New Guinea. These are large birds. In fact, only emus and ostriches are larger.

Forest Dwellers

A cassowary is a large and shy forest dweller that usually stays deep in the forest away from people. These birds have three of four surviving species still thriving.

  • The double-wattled cassowary—found mainly in lowlands. Also classified as the Southern Cassowary.
  • The single-wattled cassowary—again, a lowland bird, but classified Northern Cassowary.
  • Bennett’s cassowary—or the Dwarf Cassowary so named to commemorate George Bennet, a world-renowned Australian naturalist. This species lives primarily in the highlands.
Cassowary Facts
  • What do cassowaries Eat? Cassowaries are what some might call semi-frugivores that eat raw fruits and other succulent parts of plants such as roots and chutes. However, when there are other types of food available, cassowaries have been known to eat things like insects and snails.
  • How big are cassowaries? Cassowaries are large flightless birds. The Southern Cassowary can reach as tall as six feet and weigh more than a hundred pounds. These birds have three-toe-claws, with the middle claw being weapon-like for defense.
  • How fast can cassowaries run? Up to thirty miles an hour.

Can cassowaries jump? Yes! They can leap about six feet into the air as they run and maneuver through the forest undergrowth.


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