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Symbio’s Eddie, contender for ‘Father of the Year’

Eddie the emu, about to start incubating his six eggs.

Eddie the emu, about to start incubating his six eggs.

Eddie, the resident male emu at Symbio Wildlife Park is definitely in contention to be named as father of the year after he just put his life of leisure on hold for the next 60 days whilst tending to his six precious new eggs.

Eddie’s wife Eva, laid the six mango sized eggs weighing between 700 and 900 grams just last week, to the pleasure of zoo staff. It is no wonder she is well deserved to forgo maternal duties after an effort like that. Especially considering it took upwards of 9 days to lay them all, and that’s a long labor in any sense of word.

Unlike many other birds whereby the female is the sole care giver throughout all stages of their young’s life, with Australia’s largest bird, the female leaves after the eggs are laid and the male sits on the eggs for the next 8 weeks until he hears a knock, knock, knock and they hatch.

Throughout this time Eddie will rarely venture far from his important post of incubating the nest, nor will he eat, which will lead him to loose up to 30% of his total body weight.

In the wild chicks stay with the male for about 18 months after hatching, but Eddie is lucky, as he will have the loving team at Symbio to help him out.

Eddie is relishing in his new role as expected father, and can be seen these school holidays, sprawled out over the nest, looking every part the proud father.