Kagu walking on forest floor


Kagus evolved in isolation on the island of New Caledonia in the South Pacific, where there were no natural predators. When Europeans arrived, these flightless birds became easy prey for the dogs, cats and rats that came with them. Their shaggy wings lack the muscle for flight, however they can be used for gliding short distances and, along with an impressive crest on the back of the head, for display. Kagus are carnivorous birds living on a diet of worms, snails and small lizards foraged from the forest floor.

Did you know?
Kagus are known locally as 'ghosts of the forest' due to their pale grey plumage.

Scientific name: Rhynochetos jubatus

Rank: Species

Common names:


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The following habitats are found across the Kagu distribution range. Find out more about these environments, what it takes to live there and what else inhabits them.

Additional data source: Animal Diversity Web


  1. Life
  2. Animals
  3. Vertebrates
  4. Birds
  5. Eurypygiformes
  6. Rhynochetidae
  7. Rhynochetos
  8. Kagu