The Lesser Rhea (Rhea pennata) is a large flightless bird. It is also known as Darwin’s Rhea. It cannot fly. Birds that cannot fly are called ratites. The ostrich, kiwi, and cassowary are also ratites.
The Lesser Rhea is emu-like with a body of large fluffy grey or brown spotted feathers, a long neck, and long legs. It has three toes like the emu (the ostrich has two toes). Its toes have sharp claws. Its head, neck, rump, and thighs are feathered. It has a small head and a small beak.
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What are the similarities and differences between big bird feathers – the feathers of the largest birds on earth?
The Emu, the Cassowary, the Ostrich, and the Rhea are large flightless ratite birds. The Emu is from Australia, the Cassowary is from northern Australia and New Guinea, the Ostrich is from countries in Africa, and the Rhea is from countries in South America.
Their wings have no keel (anchor) on their sternum (a long flat breastbone) to connect to their wing muscles, which means that the birds can’t fly. Therefore, their feathers are mainly decorative.
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What is the difference between the Emu (Dromaius novaehollandiae) and the Greater Rhea (Rhea Americana)?
The Emu and the Greater Rhea are large fightless birds. The Emu and the Greater Rhea are both ratites, because they cannot fly (the Ostrich, Kiwi, and Cassowary are also ratites).
The Emu and the Greater Rhea have a large, soft, grey-brown feathered body, a long featherless neck, and long featherless legs with three toes.
The Emu has orange-brown eyes, whereas the Greater Rhea has blue to brown eyes.
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The Emu (Dromaius novaehollandiae) is a large flightless Australian bird. It is a ratite. Ratites include the ostrich, kiwi, and cassowary.
The Emu has a large soft, shaggy, grey-brown-feathered body, a long almost featherless pale-blue neck, and long featherless legs with three-toed feet that have sharp claws and thick, cushioned pads. Its brown feathers have black tips. It has a soft short grey beak and grey legs. It has orange-brown eyes.
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What is a ratite?
A ratite is a flightless bird – a bird that cannot fly – such as an emu, ostrich, kiwi, or cassowary.
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Are there advantages in having a long neck in the animal kingdom?
Having long necks helps giraffes, camels, and llamas reach leaves and branches in tall trees that smaller herbivorous mammals cannot reach.
Almost all mammals have seven cervical vertebrae (bones) in their necks, whether they have long necks or short necks. Humans have seven neck bones too.
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