Wild About Animals
New members come, and say Hello
Plant a seed and watch it grow
Old Members why not share your news
We have loads more for you to choose
Guests your welcome to have a look
but why not sign up and then get hooked!
To All its a pleasure to have you with us

Note: New Members are expected to post within one Month of joining, and post on a fairly regular basis.

The Ostrich and the Egg, Mara North Conservancy, Dec. 2012

View previous topic View next topic Go down

The Ostrich and the Egg, Mara North Conservancy, Dec. 2012

Post  Safariman on Wed Feb 13, 2013 3:47 pm

Having just finished a leisurely bush breakfast, we were slowly driving back to camp when we saw a female ostrich on her nest. We drove up to her and she appeared quite relaxed and I was able to take some photos including some very good close-ups. Moving on we noticed about 100 metres away a solitary egg on the ground. On inspection it appeared undamaged apart from a few marks probably inflicted by an hyena that had possibly stolen the egg from the nest. David my driver and guide decided to return the egg to the nest. We drove very slowly back to the nest to within a few metres and David very carefully opened the drivers door and gently placed the egg on the ground. This seemed to disturb the ostrich who immediately stood up wondering what was this big smelly, noisy, green bird doing laying an egg!! We could now see the nest and counted 22 eggs, or 23 with the rescued egg. Obviously this was a communal nest of 2 or 3 ostrich as they only normally lay between 8-10 eggs. We drove off leaving the ostrich to get back to her nest and resume her incubation. We drove by the following day and an ostrich was still on the nest but the rescued egg was nowhere to be seen and hopefully the ostrich had rolled it back into the nest.
A couple of days later we came across some more ostrich, a male and 2 females. There was much wing flapping and neck stretching going on and it was obviously a mating ritual of some sort including what appeared to be the male and a female "burying their heads in the sand" if only figuratively!! The female closest to us was flapping her wings furiously and it was only when we drove closer that we realised that she was laying her eggs and saw in a depression in the ground a single freshly laid ostrich egg!! Meanwhile the male was speedily chasing the other female across the plains at high speed. It did look like something out of a Benny Hill sketch.
The ostrich in the Mara are the common ostrich and I have added a couple of photos of slightly different
Somali ostrich which I saw in Meru. The females are almost identical but the male Somali ostrich has a very distinctive blue/purple neck and legs.




Female ostrich on the nest



Female common ostrich



22 ostrich eggs!!



"Heads in the sand"



Wing flapping



One freshly laid ostrich egg!!



"The chase"



Male Somali ostrich



Male and female Somali ostrich


Safariman
avatar
Safariman

Posts : 518
Join date : 2012-06-27
Age : 73
Location : Buckinghamshire

Back to top Go down

Re: The Ostrich and the Egg, Mara North Conservancy, Dec. 2012

Post  Laikipia on Wed Feb 13, 2013 5:32 pm

Great photos of the ostrich Safariman. They really are such curious looking birds with such enormous strong legs. It would be lovely to think the single egg you rescued had been moved back to the nest. I had no idea they combined and became communal. That's a whole lot of eggs to keep safe.

The mating dance is amazing to watch and the actual mating is over in a few seconds - interesting to watch, especially the speed the male 'is out of there' afterwards Very Happy

Thanks for sharing - I do look forward to your posts, stories and photos, it's like being back in Africa each time (which as it is snowing here today is especially wonderful) Very Happy

Lai
avatar
Laikipia
Moderator

Posts : 16153
Join date : 2010-05-13
Age : 57
Location : Cheshire

Back to top Go down

Re: The Ostrich and the Egg, Mara North Conservancy, Dec. 2012

Post  littlewid on Wed Feb 13, 2013 8:49 pm

They really are huge birds aren't they and I am certain that in real life they look even more enormous. Their feathers are amazing and I love the Male Somali with his black and orange feathers, they are stunning. Is it my imagination or do Common Ostrich have slightly softer looking faces than the Somali Ostrich? The feathers on the female sitting on the nest really do look so incredibly soft and I wonder how many feathers an Ostrich has. The other thing that is striking are those wings, I know they weren't fully stretched in your picture Safariman but you can see how enormous they are.
I too hope the egg was rolled in with the other 22 and that 23 healthy Ostrich were delivered!
As always fantastic pictures and build up to the pics Safariman, you always feel as though you were there with you Very Happy

littlewid-x-

_________________
LOVE ALL WILDLIFE
avatar
littlewid
Admin

Posts : 10464
Join date : 2009-12-28
Location : West Sussex

Back to top Go down

Re: The Ostrich and the Egg, Mara North Conservancy, Dec. 2012

Post  Doogs on Fri Feb 15, 2013 2:05 pm

Lovely story Safariman and what wonderful, clear photos. 22/23 eggs WOW that is a lot. If it's a 'communal nest ' how do the females decide who is who's when the eggs hatch ??? :What: Laughing

You know these birds are BIG but you don't realise just how big and powerful they are until you see them for real Cool

Loved "The Chase" photo, made me immediatley think of Road Runner when I saw it Very Happy

avatar
Doogs
Moderator

Posts : 10734
Join date : 2010-05-14
Age : 47
Location : Aberdeen

Back to top Go down

Re: The Ostrich and the Egg, Mara North Conservancy, Dec. 2012

Post  whitestarling on Fri Feb 15, 2013 5:21 pm

Thanks for the photos Safariman, and I love the little titles with each one. Great shots of the eggs. Thats the first I've heard of a communal nest with Ostriches. it seems strange
each female should share it, although I can understand the safety in numbers theory for survival
WS

_________________
If I can make somebody smile, my day has been worthwhile
avatar
whitestarling
Admin

Posts : 12826
Join date : 2009-12-26
Age : 72
Location : North Wales

http://wildaboutanimals.forumotion.net

Back to top Go down

Re: The Ostrich and the Egg, Mara North Conservancy, Dec. 2012

Post  gregrowlerson on Sat Feb 16, 2013 10:41 am

Wonderful work again Safariman, both with pics and stories. It was a grand effort I believe just to count all those eggs! It's lovely that female ostriches would care for anothers eggs too. Very sweet.

"The mating dance is amazing to watch and the actual mating is over in a few seconds - interesting to watch, especially the speed the male 'is out of there' afterwards."

So Lai, this whole male thingy of "I'm sorry darling, but I have to get up early in the morning" excuse obviously covers more than one species

Really, it's just a case of one thing leading to another Razz
avatar
gregrowlerson

Posts : 1732
Join date : 2012-11-22
Age : 36
Location : Melbourne

Back to top Go down

Re: The Ostrich and the Egg, Mara North Conservancy, Dec. 2012

Post  Laikipia on Sat Feb 16, 2013 12:32 pm

Very good GR and very true, at least in the case of ostrichs silent on any other species!!! We watched two ostrich in Laikipia some years ago and it was Censored wham bam thank you ma'am for sure Very Happy I have never seen a male ostrich run so fast afterwards!

Lai
avatar
Laikipia
Moderator

Posts : 16153
Join date : 2010-05-13
Age : 57
Location : Cheshire

Back to top Go down

Re: The Ostrich and the Egg, Mara North Conservancy, Dec. 2012

Post  gregrowlerson on Sat Feb 16, 2013 9:26 pm

Maybe he thought he was committing a crime Laughing

Let's get outta here! Razz

Maybe when a male ostrich sticks around afterwards is when the female really knows that she has found the one I love you

Chatting with the girls with glee afterwards: "He even spoke to me after the deed was done!" Cue lots of "awwwws" and "shucks" and jealous "that's never happened to me before" from her friends.
avatar
gregrowlerson

Posts : 1732
Join date : 2012-11-22
Age : 36
Location : Melbourne

Back to top Go down

Re: The Ostrich and the Egg, Mara North Conservancy, Dec. 2012

Post  Laikipia on Sun Feb 17, 2013 10:07 am

ROFL GR - good ideas indeedy, I have a thought it's because those powerful legs can do a lot of damage affraid

Lai
avatar
Laikipia
Moderator

Posts : 16153
Join date : 2010-05-13
Age : 57
Location : Cheshire

Back to top Go down

Re: The Ostrich and the Egg, Mara North Conservancy, Dec. 2012

Post  gregrowlerson on Sun Feb 17, 2013 10:17 am

ROFL Lai - are you saying that females feel like kicking their partner in the aftermath of the one thing leads to another thingy? Laughing

So okay, maybe a kick out of bed, but I thought that was merely metaphorical Razz

Or maybe the male ostrich just can't be bothered cooking breakfast? I'm with him on that Very Happy
avatar
gregrowlerson

Posts : 1732
Join date : 2012-11-22
Age : 36
Location : Melbourne

Back to top Go down

Re: The Ostrich and the Egg, Mara North Conservancy, Dec. 2012

Post  Laikipia on Sun Feb 17, 2013 10:24 am

You got it GR that's my very thought and he being sensible sometimes wants to protect his interests Censored

Lai Laughing
avatar
Laikipia
Moderator

Posts : 16153
Join date : 2010-05-13
Age : 57
Location : Cheshire

Back to top Go down

Re: The Ostrich and the Egg, Mara North Conservancy, Dec. 2012

Post  gregrowlerson on Sun Feb 17, 2013 10:58 am

Yes, particularly if he was going to be kicked in that Censored area Razz

A smart cookie that ostrich Laughing
avatar
gregrowlerson

Posts : 1732
Join date : 2012-11-22
Age : 36
Location : Melbourne

Back to top Go down

Re: The Ostrich and the Egg, Mara North Conservancy, Dec. 2012

Post  Sponsored content


Sponsored content


Back to top Go down

View previous topic View next topic Back to top


 
Permissions in this forum:
You cannot reply to topics in this forum