The Southern Cassowary
- Full name is Casuarius casuarius
- Height is 1.5 - 2 metres
- Body black
- Bare blue and red skin on neck and head
- Bony helmet on head
- Heavy legs
- Can be dangerous when cornered or with chicks
- NEVER feed cassowaries.
- If you are composting food scraps put the scraps in a secure enclosure out at night,
- Don’t stop the vehicle when you see a cassowary. Simply drive slowly and carefully past and alert oncomingvehicles to the hazard by flashing your lights.
- If you encounter a cassowary in the wild, back calmly away. Hold a bag or other item in front of your body and try to get behind a tree. Don’t run – cassowaries are faster.
- Don’t get between an adult bird and its chicks.
- Father cassowaries are the caregivers.
- The female lays her eggs in a scrape on the ground.
- The father then sits on them for about 50 days until they hatch.
- The little chicks, which start life with cream and black stripes, stay with the father for about nine months.
- They follow him around , learning how to feed.
- Then, as the next breeding season approaches (June to October) he chases them away.
- Many chicks die at this age as they venture out looking for territories of their own.
CASSOWARY HOT SPOTS IN THE CAPE TRIBULATION - DAINTREE COAST AREA
- Along the main road to Cape Tribulation, several locations are marked by signs
- Jindalba Boardwalk at Cow Bay
- Emmagen Creek north of Cape Tribulation