Zoo Cassowary lays multi-coloured eggs

The zoos female Southern cassowary named Twiggy laid three large eggs at Paignton Zoo on Monday. Cassowary eggs are normally green so the Bird keepers were astonished to find these different coloured eggs hidden in a shallow nest.

Cassowaries love fruit and most are predominantly frugivorous. The vast majority of their diet consists of vegetation fruit berries insects spiders and small vertebrates. They are the second largest bird species in the world and are related to ostriches emus and rheas Females are typically larger and heavier than the males.

The Bird team are now waiting to see if any of the eggs hatch and what the chicks will look like. With cassowaries incubation of the eggs is carried out by the male bird for around 50 days.

The Southern cassowary (Casuarius casuarius) is classed as Vulnerable by the IUCN facing threats of habitat loss due to deforestation and hunting. Paignton Zoo is involved in the European ex-situ breeding programme (EEP) for the species.