Where do ostriches live?
Ostriches live throughout Africa’s semiarid plains and woodlands.
Tags: Botswana, Burkina Faso, Kenya, Mozambique, Namibia, Niger, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, Zimbabwe, East Africa, Southern Africa, West/Central Africa, Kazungula, Kilimanjaro, Samburu, Zambezi, Cameroon, Ostrich
View Africa | Habitat
What is an ostrich?
The ostrich is the largest bird in the world. It is flightless and relies on strong legs with two clawed toes used for running and kicking. Males are black with white wings and tail feathers, while females are brownish-gray.
Ostriches are resourceful and adaptable grazers.
They feed on grasses, shrubbery, berries, seeds, and succulents. Ostriches also eat insects and small reptiles—which they chase in an awkward zigzag pattern. Ostriches can rely on the vegetation as a water source for a short time; however, for long-term survival, they need open-water sources.
They are polygamous.
A male ostrich will escort a flock made up of one head female and a couple of subordinate females. Courtship is very ritualized and synchronized. All females lay their eggs in the same nest, though the head female usually drives the others away after laying. The male plays a large part in raising the young, from helping to construct the nest to guarding the eggs and chasing off predators.
Sometimes, flocks mingle together.
During the dry season, large groups (up to 700 birds) will congregate peacefully at a water source, though flock identity remains intact. Sometimes, one flock will adopt the young of another, and sometimes, groups of subadults will form.
The ostrich can roar like a lion.
While not exactly a roar, the male ostrich has a booming warning call that can sound like a lion.