Kuranda Cassowary news

Subject: Kuranda Cassowary news
From: Phil & Sue Gregory <>
Date: Wed, 27 Jun 2012 12:21:34 +1000
The Cassowary nest had 8 startling lime-green eggs on June 25, but I fear it is 
not being incubated as the pair are still around here most mornings. The clutch 
has gone from 4 on May 31 to 7 on June 11 and now 8 on June 25.  We will 
monitor very discreetly from a distance.

Reference to HANZAB Vol 1 Part A (!990) is interesting as there is a lot more 
information now available, and I really need to get another paper written up to 
document whet we have learned over the years ( I published one in an obscure 
behavioural journal some years back). The clutch size given in HANZAB is 
between 3-5, not well known, and incubation at 30 days seems way too short. 
Life expectancy is given as 13-14 years , but the male here is at least 25. 

I have never heard them calling at night, I wonder if that was confused with 
something else? I have a small collection of calls and missed a new one the 
other day, when the female squatted right down, extended her neck horizontally 
and gave a a single long low infra-sonic type call, longer lasting than the 
usual departure call given by the male, repeated 2-3 times. It is hard to get 
these as the calling is very intermittent. This single call is we believe a 
mating invitation and can bring the male quickly in from some distance, though 
in this case no mating resulted.

HANZAB also states they blush or change colour, and again we have never seen 
any evidence of this in our 14 years of almost daily contacts with this species 
and thousands of sightings. I do think they colour up more when breeding is 
under way and fade off slightly as the mating intensity declines, but I have 
yet to see one blush.

Phil & Sue Gregory

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