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Southern Cassowary

(Casuarius casuarius)
Alternative names: "Double-wattled Cassowary", "Australian Cassowary"
Size: 1.5-1.75 m
Weight: 29-34 kg (male), 58 kg (female)
Description     Classification     Distribution     Sightings     Photos     Breeding     Nest     Eggs     Behaviour     Food     Call/s

Physical description

Click here for a physical description

Taxonomy, classification

See Southern Cassowary at Wikipedia .

Range, habitat, finding this species

Click here for information on habitat and range


Click here for sighting information


Race "johnsonii"

Southern Cassowary with three chicks crossing a road (photo courtesy of S. Hardy & D. Johnston)
[Daintree to Port Douglas road, QLD, August 2013]

Frontal view of an adult Southern Cassowary in captivity

Near-frontal view of an adult Southern Cassowary in captivity (photo courtesy of C. Hayne)

Breeding information

Breeding season: Jun - Oct Eggs: 2 - 5 Incubation period: 60 days Fledging age: N/A

Eggs are incubated by the male.


"bungobittah", "malunna" = Nest [Aboriginal]

Type: Scrape Material: Leaf lining Height above ground: N/A


"boyanga", "booyanga", "derinya", "dirandil", "koomura", "ngampu", "nooluk", "pateena" = Egg; "dirundirri" = eggs [Aboriginal]; "gawu" = eggs [gamilaraay]

Size: 140 x 90 mm Colour: Greenish brown Shape: Elliptical

Southern Cassowary eggs have a structured surface.


Social behaviour: Territorial Mobility: Sedentary Elementary unit: Solitary

Pairs, or later family clans, form only during the breeding season.

Food, Diet

Southern Cassowaries are fruit-eaters.

These pages are largely based on our own observations and those of our contributors. For more salient facts on any bird species please refer to a field guide.