An encounter with Ostriches in Masai Mara, Kenya

Seeing an Ostrich (Struthio camelus) in the wild reminds me of a commercial that featured some gadget just earlier this year. The feathers of this Ostrich were in pristine condition. Remember seeing those in the enclosure with feathers that were in the very poor condition, probably due to stress.

Not seeing one but 2 Ostriches! This was a female Ostrich trying to court the male with darker feathers and pink legs (male Ostrich in Masai Mara tend to have pink legs, not sure this is only during the breeding period or throughout the year) by moving in front of the male with the wings slightly open.

The female started running when the male showed interest and what happened next was like a wild goose chase…

After few rounds of chasing, the male Ostrich succeeded in mating with the female. What happened next was even more unbelievable…

The female just laid an egg on the ground and went away… leaving this male Ostrich not sure what to do with the egg.

The male Ostrich just rolled the egg from one place to another. We didn’t wait to see until the end. So not sure what the male Ostrich did with the egg…

I guess this was an unfertilised egg and that was why the female just dropped it and went away? If the female just mated with this male for the very first time, chances was that this was an unfertilised egg. But again, I’m not sure.

Samson Tan
Singapore
4th December 2018

Note: This was first posted HERE on 3rd December 2018 under the title of “Birds of Masai Mara – The Ostrich”.

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