African Queen

20399Well…almost. The Queen of the birds, that is.

We were quite surprised as a mating pair of ostriches quickly approached our vehicle from the plains shortly after entering the gates of Tarangire on Day 1 of our safari. They were simply crossing the road, but provided a lesson on evolution. Just for kicks…give some thought to a simple question. What colour’s an ostrich?

20274In my mind they are black and white. But as with most of the feathered folks, the female is a more modest brown. But this brown beast is a BEAUTY. Apparently, both the male and female ostrich sit eggs. The male sits during the night (hence his black colour) and the female sits during the day (hence, she’s the colour of the grassy plains). The female is surely one worth fighting over as short video clip we took below.

We were just driving along when we noticed two male ostrich chasing one another on our final day in the Tarangire. Our driver stopped suddenly as one of the birds fell onto the ground and began to writhe and splay like a Thanksgiving turkey. Suddenly, the other bird approached and the first dropped stood, propped one leg against the other and they both began to pummel one another taking shots with one foot while bracing with the other. An INCREDIBLE scene. Ultimately the one who started the fight ran away after being squelched by the other male. But what a show–much better than any dinner theatre I know 🙂

20469This bird is also FAST. As if floating, it holds a steady gait despite its ample size and awkward physique.

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