Rhea americana

family: Rheidae
geographic range: South America
weight: 24 kg
lifespan: 14-15 years
habitat: pampa
lifestyle: solitary or group

It is widespread in pampas, open forests and grassy areas. During mating season it can be found next to lakes and swamps. It is the largest South American bird. It’s body length is between 1.2-1.4 m, the rooster can grow as high as 1.8 m. Their feathers are ash gray on the back, dirty-white on the belly, its neck and chest is black. The bare parts of its head are meat-colored. They are flightless. Roosters ready to mate spread their wings and inflate their long neck. In this posture they are shouting “nan-du” and dancing their mating dance to impress hens and shoo away rival roosters with strong kicks. The nest is guarded by the male, he cares for the chicks alone. Their feathers are used for brooms, their skin is utilized as well, it’s eggs and meat is consumed. Due to over-utilizing it is decreasing in numbers.

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