Ostriches in South Australia

Ostriches, Monarto Zoo, South Australia

Ostriches, Monarto Zoo, South Australia

If I want to see some Ostriches here in South Australia I only have to drive for about ten minutes. Ostriches are not native Australian birds, of course, because they have been introduced into Australia from Africa.

The Ostriches I can see are actually in the open range Monarto Zoo near Adelaide, South Australia. The zoo features many animals from Africa, including a small flock of Ostriches.

The Ostrich is actually on the official list of Australian birds. In the nineteenth century they were brought to Australia and farmed in a number of localities. They were primarily bred for their feathers, the plumes being much in demand for decorating ladies’ hats. The fashion didn’t last and many Ostriches were released or escaped into the wild, forming small breeding colonies. I know of two such areas: the Coorong south of here and north of Port Augusta. I believe there is still a very small remnant population near Port Augusta but I never managed to see any despite living there for many years.


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