Emu baby

JoAnne_Al(7)March 17, 2006

Hello everyone, happy St. Patty's Day. Most of all welcome to spring!! Almost spring...here in Al. we're having warm days and cool nights.

Now about the emu, I've had a pair for 3 years. Every time the eggs hatch, the male kills the babies. What do I do? He had one that had hatched out and we took it from him today, I have it in a box with a heat lamp. I've read different links and they all talk about incubating. My incubator is for chickens, not large enough for emu eggs. Right now the baby is sitting not standing... do I need to do something to make him stand? My son gave me the emu for my birthday one year....I'm not into killing for oil or meat.... I simply like them, as well as my guineas, chickens, ducks, turkeys, pecock and llama. I like babies and watching them grow.....If you have any info, please pass it alone. I don't want to lose this little fellow.

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velvet_sparrow(Zone 5b, Gardnerville, NV)

Not quite emus, but the United Peafowl Association's website may be of help:

Also, I googled "raising emus" and got a bunch of results.
USDA site on emus, with TONS of links to other emu sites, including various clubs and breeders:

Another good site on hatching & chicks here, also on what to feed--make sure you are feeding ratite feed:

I couldn't find any info on weather the not standing thing is a problem or a normal occurance....how old is the chick?

Good luck, and post a pic if you get one! :)

Velvet ~:>

    Bookmark   March 17, 2006 at 8:45PM
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Thanks Velvet for those links...as for the age, the baby was dry and has all feathers, but still isn't drinking and eating. So we're guessing less than 2 or 3 days old. I did find some info that help alot....thanks again and wish me luck....(-:

    Bookmark   March 18, 2006 at 1:09AM
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i just hatched a baby emu egg. i have no idea how to care for it!i hahve been searching everywhere online to find what i should feed it and how to feed it but cant find anything helpful and i could not connect to the above site. any info will help me please! thank

    Bookmark   March 10, 2008 at 12:01PM
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I found this:

"Once an Emu chick absorbs the yolk sac at about 10 days after hatch, these birds are very hardy and only require normal livestock hygiene and maintenance....

"We feed our emu chicks a special feed that has been prepared specially for us by Lanark Leeds Distributor. It consists of 18-20% protein pellet mixed with crushed corn, wheat and soya bean."

I would dip his beak in some water and give him fresh water every day. Go to your feed store and see if they have anything that resembles the above formula and mix in some chopped greens. Sit with the bird and simulate picking at the food and greens. Show him how it's done. Show him every day until he gets it. Don't wait for the yolk to be absorbed.

"Newly hatched chicks cannot regulate their body heat and need a source of warmth until 3 months old if the outside temperature is cold. Maintain temperature at 90 to 95 degrees F for the first 3 days after hatch. Decrease temperature 5 degrees every 2 weeks. In warm weather, use supplemental heat only at night. The heat source should be of adequate size for all chicks to get around it, and the pen area should be large enough so the chicks can get away from the heat to avoid overheating. Brooder boxes for chicks 1 to 3 days old are typically about 1 foot high and 2 x 3 or 3 x 4 feet in area per 10 chicks. Chicks may pile and smother one another. Avoid overcrowding, extremes of heat or cold and sudden frightening of the chicks. Piling generally becomes less of a problem after the first few weeks. The floor of the brooding area must be easy to clean and have good traction. Chicks can be moved to an 8 x 8-foot nursery pen at approximately 70 to 85 degrees F on day four and then into progressively larger pens. Encourage outside exercise periods and sunbathing starting at 5 to 7 days of age, depending on the weather. Separate juvenile groups by age and/or size into large communal pens (50 x 100 feet) or pastures. Grass usually survives well in emu pens except along the fence, where the birds' tendency to fencewalk kills it.

Many farmers feed newly hatched chicks a mixture of chopped greens, a commercial starter crumble and a vitamin/mineral supplement. The greens are thought to attract the birds to the feeder and stimulate feed consumption. Water may be offered before food by about 12 hours. Grit is offered with the food although it is not necessary if feeding a processed commercial diet. Chicks are usually fed twice a day for about an hour. Diets are usually in a small pellet or large crumble form for chicks. Fiber content varies between 7 and 15 percent. Some nutritionists recommend fiber content between 5 and 10 percent. Diets with more than 25 percent protein (such as dog food and catfish chow) have been associated with growth problems in young emu. Breeder diets contain additional calcium, or calcium can be offered "free choice" in the form of oyster shell. Breeders that are too fat do not appear to reproduce as well as those in normal condition. Some emu producers prefer free choice feeding systems, while others prefer one to three daily feedings. However, multiple daily feedings provide a time for interaction with the birds, making it easier to detect illness and control an individual bird's weight."

Good luck

    Bookmark   March 10, 2008 at 10:44PM
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I'm suprised your male is killing the babies. Usually it is the emu male that raises the babies. Are you sure he was trying to kill it?
You got good information above. You have to teach the chick how to eat. Sounds strange, but it's true.
A feed store should be able to order emu feed for your chick.

    Bookmark   March 11, 2008 at 12:48AM
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up date?

    Bookmark   March 18, 2008 at 7:56AM
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