The Emu is Australia’s tallest native bird, reaching 1.6-1.9m when standing erect. It weighs 30-45kg, which is lighter than its closest living relative, the Southern Cassowary Casuarius casuarius.
Emus are easy to identify. Adult Emus are covered with shaggy grey-brown feathers except for the neck and head, which are largely naked and bluish-black. The wings are greatly reduced, but the legs are long and powerful. Each foot has three forward-facing toes and no hind toe.
The Emu is found only in Australia. It lives throughout most of the continent, ranging from coastal regions to high in the Snowy Mountains. The main habitats are sclerophyll forest and savanna woodland. These birds are rarely found in rainforest or very arid areas. Emus were once found in Tasmania, but were exterminated soon after Europeans arrived. Two dwarf species of emus that lived on Kangaroo Island and King Island also became extinct.