Andrzej Kubik

The incredible ostrich

When it comes to animals, ostriches are pretty fascinating. The ostrich is the world’s largest bird and has plenty of attributes that make it a contender for the coolest animal alive. Read on to learn more.

Ostriches are on average around 2.7m tall. This is over a meter higher than the average male human. They also weigh in at an impressive 160kg. The animal is often seen in the plains of Africa and is a typical prey for cheetahs, lions, leopards, and hyenas.

The ostrich is incredibly fast at an average top speed of 70 km/h. This allows it to evade many of its predators. However, when you consider that its top speed includes the cheetah that runs at over 90 km/h and the lion at over 80 km/h it is often not able to get away. Predators like these are still very wary of the ostrich. Its large size means that one lion or one leopard could not take it on alone. 

Lions and leopards tend to attack ostriches in packs, after all weighing in at over 160kg, there is plenty of food to share. Ostriches rely on their large size and long legs to defend themselves. A kick from an ostrich leg packs a lot of force, one kick can kill a lion. At the end of each leg is some sharp claws that can pierce the skin as well.

If you have ever heard that the ostrich will just bury its head in the sand when the going gets tough, you may think they are a coward, and they are. They do not, however, ever bury their head in the sand. If they are able to, they will flee from a predator but if for some reason that is not possible they will lay down on the ground and lay their long neck flat to the surface. This is their best hope of not being spotted and where the common misconception comes from.