Ostrich Pictures

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Ostrich Silhouettes

Photo © Sean Nel / Shutterstock.

Pictures of ostriches, the tallest and heaviest species of all living birds. Although its bulky body means that flying is out of the question, the ostrich has adapted to life on the ground with impressive agility.

Although its bulky body means that flying is out of the question, the ostrich has adapted to life on the ground with impressive agility.

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Ostriches Running

Photo © Anup Shah / Getty Images.

Ostriches are superb runners that can sprint at speeds of up to 45 mph. The ostrich is also an endurance runner and can jog at a slick 30 mph for as long as a half an hour.

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Wild Ostrich Running

Photo © Stockbyte / Getty Images.

Ostriches belong to a clan of flightless birds called the ratites. Ratites have a smooth breastbone which lacks a keel. Ratites have lost their keel over the course of their evolution—the keel is the bone structure to which flight muscles would normally be attached. Since ratites do not fly, they no longer need a keel. Other ratites include cassowaries, kiwis, moas and emus.

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Ostrich Pair

Photo © Robert Airhart / Shutterstock.

Male and female ostriches differ slightly in their appearance. Males are mostly black but have white primary feathers and a white tail. Females and youngsters are greyish brown all over.

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Ostrich Close-Up

Photo © Charlesjsharp / Wikipedia.

Ostriches have two toes on each foot, a characteristic that sets them apart from all other birds, which have four toes on each foot.

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Ostrich and Eggs

Photo © Karl Ammann / Getty Images.

Ostriches lay 3-pound eggs, which measure some 6 inches in length and 5 inches in diameter, making them the title of largest egg produced by any living bird.

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Ostrich Running

Photo © Daryl Balfour / Getty Images.

Ostriches live in Africa and occupy a variety of habitats including deserts, semiarid plains, savannas and open woodlands.

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Four Ostriches

Photo © Adam Gault / Getty Images.

Ostriches have been the largest living bird for over five centuries, ever since the giant elephant birds of Madagascar went extinct.

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Ostrich Pair

Photo © Digital Zoo / Getty Images.

Ostriches have a powerful kick that they put to use during the breeding season when males duke it out for control of harems. After breeding season finishes, males are much more cooperative with one another.

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Ostrich Close-Up

Photo © Christoph Burki / Getty Images.

Ostriches have the largest eye of any living terrestrial vertebrate, measuring 2 inches in diameter.

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Ostrich Dusting

Photo © Altrendo Nature / Getty Images.

Ostriches eat mostly plant material, though at times they may also feed on insects and small vertebrates.

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Two Ostriches

Photo © Theo Allofs / Getty Images.

During their 5-month breeding season, ostriches form flocks of between 5 and 50 individuals, often intermingling with grazing mammals such as zebras and antelope. When breeding season is finished, this larger flock breaks down into small groups of 2 to 5 birds.