Technicolor turkey: the exotic cassowary

By Alexander Holmgren

Northern Cassowary (Casuarius unappendiculatus) in West Papua, New Guinea Indonesia. Photo by Rhett A. Butler / mongabay.

The Cassowary is one the worlds most exotic animals. Three species of Cassowary are recognized to this day scattered across the forests of New Guinea and Australia. The Cassowary’s vibrant blue and red hues that run along its neck as well as its elaborate make it truly a sight to behold. Know primarily for their mysterious nature these birds are adept at disappearing through the forest long before humans arrive. Because the Cassowary cannot fly it has adapted through other means such as it’s large size and powerful legs for survival. The southern Cassowary is actually the third tallest and second largest bird in the world, combined with it’s jungle habitat this makes for quite a spectacle as a two meter tall bird runs through the jungle at up to thirty one miles per hour. The legs of the Cassowary also allow these bird to jump almost 5 feet, and allow them to be one of the few birds that is a strong swimmer. The middle toe of each foot is host to a long dagger like claw ideal for defense, making the Cassowary one impressive bird.

Northern Cassowary (Casuarius unappendiculatus). Photo by Rhett A. Butler / mongabay.

Author: mongabay

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