Ostriches in Australia – and near my home

If I want to see an Ostrich I only have to take a ten minute drive from home.

Now before all you Australian twitchers out there jump in your car or on a plane to “tick” this species off your list, let me explain. The Ostriches I’m talking about are in the Monarto Zoo just down the road from Murray Bridge in South Australia. They have a thriving collection of Ostriches as part of their displays of African animals. Visitors can walk down the hill from the Visitor Centre and get a close look through the fence. You also get excellent views as you do the bus tour of the zoo.

Ostriches at Monarto Zoo, South Australia

Ostriches at Monarto Zoo, South Australia

Ostrich Farms:

Many people would not know that there have been several feral populations of Ostriches in Australia over the last hundred years or so. One such population existed near Port Augusta in the far north. They had been “farmed” for their feathers on a sheep and cattle station there in the late 1800s. A remnant feral population has existed in this region ever since, though their numbers were never more than a few dozen at best. Even though I lived in Port Augusta in the 1970s for ten years, I never managed to see even one.

Other ostrich farms existed in other states and several in the Coorong region of South Australia where a feral population existed for some time. None survive in that area today. A recent correspondent on the Birding-Aus forum lived in Port Augusta in the 1990s and he suggested that the feral population there was captured for sale. At the time Ostrich farming had a sudden but short resurgence. He was of the opinion that a small remnant population still exists in that region. There have been no recorded sightings to my knowledge in the last decade.    CORRECTION: There was  a report today on Birding -Aus of  a sighting of a pair with 9 chicks (May 17th 2009) on Mt Arden Station near Port Augusta. (Note: there is no access to this area for birders.)

Further reading:

UPDATE: Would all readers please note – I am not in the business of breeding and selling birds, Ostriches included. This is a blog about Australian birds in the wild.

 

9 Responses to “Ostriches in Australia – and near my home”

  1. Dear Sir,

    Greetings from Pakistan.Dear want buy Ostriches Babies age 2week.How much price one. We want make a form house.
    Kindly send us all information as soon as possible.

    God bless you all

    Mr.Shafiq & Charagh Roshan

    P.O.Box 158
    Lahore,54000-Pakistan
    Mob:0092-333-4333-418

  2. Trevor says:

    Please note that this blog is about observing Australian birds in their natural habitat in the wild.

    I am not in the business of breeding birds for sale.

    (If this is a joke from one of my family or friends – good one. Maybe I should set myself up in business.)

  3. Ibrahim kasi says:

    want to start a ostrich farming in balochistanpaksitan plese give the all kind of details about ostrich farming and breeding.and also give rates of ostrich couple and eegs.

  4. Trevor says:

    Please note that this blog is about observing Australian birds in their natural habitat in the wild.

    I am not in the business of breeding birds for sale.

  5. Michael Hastings says:

    Hi Trevor

    Happy to assist with any follow ups on Ostrich. I am current President of the Australian Ostrich Association and Manager/ Owner of Hastings Ostrich Farms. We have African Black, Zimbabwe Blue, Kenyan Red, Struthio camelus australia (original ostrich imported to Oz between 1880 and 1914 and some pure white ones I have now bred. I am still breeding commercially. Our farms have capability to produce 15000 eggs per annum. I am not far from you based in Winchelsea Victoria.

    Regards

    Michael Hastings

  6. Trevor says:

    Well, thanks for that Michael.

    Let me say it one more time – I am not in the business of breeding birds for sale.

    This blog is about observing Australian native birds in the wild, and sometimes captive birds in zoos.

    Anyone wanting to make inquiries about breeding ostriches need to contact Michael or the association, not me.

  7. amir says:

    dear sir
    I want to buy more than 2000 ostrich eggs for breeding
    please contact me with the fallowing email:amirzomorodian@gmail.com

  8. Trevor says:

    Amir – you did not read the article properly.

    Let me say it one more time – I am not in the business of breeding birds for sale.

    This blog is about observing Australian native birds in the wild, and sometimes captive birds in zoos.

    Anyone wanting to make inquiries about breeding ostriches need to contact Michael or the association, not me.

  9. […] reason I get so many requests of this nature is because I once wrote an article here about the Ostriches living near my home – in the nearby Monarto Zoo which is part of Adelaide Zoo. As a result […]