Cassowaries stand between 1.5-2 metres in height with both sexes similar in appearance. Adults are striking with their glossy black plumage and bright blue neck with touches of red. The female is larger than the male and is also the more aggressive of the two. Cassowaries are the heaviest bird in Australia.
Cassowaries are distributed throughout the western and southern areas of New Guinea. In Australia it is restricted to tracts of rainforest in north-east Queensland, from Cape York to Townsville. Cassowary habitat has diminished as a result of agriculture and urbanisation in these areas.
Cassowaries are frugivores (fruit eaters) and are responsible for the distribution and germination of many north Queensland rainforest trees. Without cassowaries, our rainforests may not be able to survive.
Cassowaries do not mate for life or form permanent bonds. The female may mate with several males in a single breeding season (June to October), thus producing several nests. Once the eggs are laid, it is up to the male to incubate the eggs for 2 months and then raise the chicks for a further 9 months.
Age: 25 Years (DOB 30/12/1989)
Beepa is a captive born cassowary moved to Australia Zoo at three years of age. As far as a cassowary goes, we consider Beepa to be quite placid. We are hopefully the female cassowaries will appreciate his easy going nature as much as we do!
Rocky was named after the Rockhampton Zoo. He has been at Australia Zoo since 2002 and is a very important member of our Endangered Species Breeding Program for cassowaries. We have paired him up with our largest, most impressive and of course, absolutely beautiful female cassowary we call Stomp. Their positive behaviour has us very excited and very hopeful this breeding season will be a successful one!
Age: 26 Years (DOB 1/1/1989)
Stomp! Her name says it all! If this lady got hold of you, you'd be in big trouble. This long legged beauty has been with us since 1992. Stomp certainly seems to have a soft spot for Rocky and we hope by the end of the breeding season, we will have a story to tell!