- May 24, 2018
the African ostrich is one of the largest recent birds. He is the bright representative of family beskilevy. These creations for the last 100 years considerably reduced a dwelling area. Earlier they were widespread not only in the territory of Africa, but in the extensive territory of Asia Minor. Now these huge birds meet mainly in savannas and semi-deserts, the located higher than 100 m above sea level.
the African ostriches deserve special attention from ornithologists. These birds do not approach under any templates by which feathery creations can be described. the African ostriches differ in very large sizes therefore are not able to fly . Even if they would like it, to soar up up at them it did not turn out as they have no keel bone, and the structure of feathers such is that they could not detain air flows. Besides, these surprising creations are not able to sing unlike other birds at all.
Life of the African ostrich (video)
These birds are champions in several parameters at once. In height the black African ostrich reaches 2.7 m. The weight of a bird can exceed 150 kg. A constitution at these creations very dense. The skeleton has no elements peculiar to birds. They have no Kiel to which the muscles providing a possibility of flight fasten. All other bone elements differ in the large sizes. The body at a bird differs in an oval form. Muscles of a breast are developed poorly. Wings at these birds are reduced also bodies, rather small in relation to dimensions. At ostriches very long neck. It allows them to reach even the leaves located at height.
Head of a bird rather small. Their auricles are not covered with feathers therefore ostriches differ in very good hearing. These birds have the biggest eyeballs in the world of birds. Their size can reach about 5 cm of Eyes of an ostrich same on volume, as well as his brain. the Developed visual device allows these creations to notice any danger. Eyes are bordered with eyelashes which do a look sad why the shape is amusing. The neck, the head and a breast of an ostrich are not covered with the dense plumage which is present at a body of a bird. Females usually have a brown-brown color. It makes them more imperceptible among the dried vegetation. All body of the African ostrich is covered with black long feathers which more resemble down. Only at edges of wings and a tail a cover white. Under wings at this bird feathers do not grow therefore these areas look a little bald.
Африканские ostriches are not capable to fly therefore in the course of evolution they learned to run very quickly. They can gather speed to 70 km/h. Legs of an ostrich very long and strong. Joints are strengthened by sheaves. As well as at other birds, bones differ in the increased fragility (except for hip elements). Ostriches lean on 2 hypertrophied fingers with a powerful horn outgrowth. They perform the same function, as a horse hoof, allowing a bird it is correct to distribute weight at the movement. Despite very impressive sizes, of a bird are very maneuverable and, using the wings as a wheel, are capable to change the direction of the movement quickly. At each finger there are very impressive claws. Strong paws allow an ostrich not only to run away from predators, but also to be protected from them. Cases when the large ostrich killed a young lion with one blow are known. As the ostrich threateningly looks, not each predator decides to attack it.
Way of life
Out of the reproduction period these huge birds lead a gregarious life. It allows them to avoid many dangers. Quite often black the ostrich living in deserts and savannas, wanders together with herds of hoofed animals. Big groups of birds can migrate in search of food and reservoirs. They show the greatest activity early in the morning and in the evening.
at Night and in hours of a midday heat of a bird hide under trees and sleep off. Thanks to excellent sight and hearing they are capable to distinguish from far away a predator. In this case birds make guttural sounds and escape. Even large African cats usually do not risk to attack ostriches as, having been frightened, it can put serious injuries with the strong legs. Only the predators working in packs can cope with these birds. As ostriches are not too clever, they can be tumbled down and killed, having had a bite a neck. The African ostriches live in extremely adverse ecological zones therefore they were accustomed to eat varied food. enter their diet:
- leaves of bushes;
- small vertebrata.
To squeeze out of food at most of nutrients, they swallow small stones which improve work of digestive organs and promote mastication of the swallowed vegetation. Throughout very long time adult individuals can do without water and when they get access to it, begin to drink to satisfy thirst for the future. Ostriches receive the most part of moisture from vegetable and animal food. Ostriches endure usually droughty period without any problem, but at the same time quite often lose up to 25% of the weight because of the most severe dehydration.
If the lake occurs in their path, they not only with pleasure drink, but also bathe to be cooled and clean feathers.
Behaviour during reproduction
The marriage season at these creations begins in March-April. It is important to African ostriches to time emergence of posterity on light as if baby birds hatch long before rains will go, they will die from the shortage of water and food. If the laying is made too late, will fill in it with rainfall and the young growth will choke, without having been born. Distinctive feature of these birds is polygamy. during reproduction the male can copulate with many representatives of an opposite sex, but at the same time help he will hatch a laying only to the dominating female. For this reason usually females form groups on 3-6 individuals. To deserve the right to copulate with them, males furiously hiss at each other and also make deaf shrill sounds.
When competitors will be banished from the territory, the ostrich can start courtings. To make an impression on females, he bends in different directions a neck, raises wings, shaking feathers as a fan. Marriage dances can be complemented with long runnings for females. It allows females to estimate his endurance and force. The male from prepotent strausikhy begins to build a nest which represents the small deepening dug directly in the earth. She the first will lay in it eggs.
The long time was unclear why it allows others to rush in the nest. However studying of behavior of birds allowed scientists to shed light on this secret. The Dominatny female has the eggs in the center of a nest, and then on an equal basis with a male is engaged in their incubation. Other individuals in herd postpone at the edges of a nest. It is considered that the dominatny female can even define the among 60 eggs and have them so that they were in the center. It solves several problems at once. In this case her baby birds have more chances to be removed as they are in an optimum zone and also the risk decreases that predators which not against to drag off such nutritious production will get them.
The period of a nasizhivaniye lasts from 35 to 45 days. Usually no more than 70% are born strausit and only 15% from them worry the first year.
Everyone egg of an ostrich is equivalent to 20 chicken. They reach weight about 2 kg. Shell thickness at these giants is about 5-6 mm. It is not too simple to baby birds to get out of such cover, but if the incubation proceeds normally, they successfully cope with this task. After birth baby birds can run already in a couple of hours enough smartly, without lagging behind parents who at once conduct young growth to water as baby birds cannot long do without it on a heat.
the Interesting facts about ostriches (video)
These huge feathery creations are not under the threat of extinction, generally now thanks to the fact that almost worldwide they are successfully parted. In spite of the fact that the homeland of ostriches is hot Africa, they quickly adapt to new conditions. It is not so difficult to support them.