A male Southern Cassowary and his chicks, with the very important Cassowary poop in the foreground. The female Cassowary lays a clutch of 3-5 eggs and leaves the males to incubate the eggs and raise the chicks. Once the clutch is laid, the female will seek out other males with which to mate. Rainforests would be a very different place, with diminished diversity if there were no Cassowaries. These huge birds are the only animals capable of distributing the seeds of more than 150 species of trees and plants across the rainforest, many of which are too large for any other forest dwelling animal to eat (the Blue Quandong is a favourite). The Cassowary is referred to as a “keystone species” due to it’s vital role in regenerating the rainforest. For more information and ways to be involved with the conservation of this spectacular bird visit Community for Coastal and Cassowary Conservation (C4).
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