Michael Palin presents the ostrich, an ornithological record-breaker, in the Kalahari Desert.
Michael Palin presents the avian record breaking ostrich in the Kalahari Desert. Ostriches are ornithological record-breakers. The black and white adult male ostrich is taller and heavier than any other living bird, reaching almost 3 metres in height and weighing a whopping 150 kilograms. Females are smaller but lay the largest eggs of any bird. The ostrich's eye measures 5cm in diameter and is the largest of any land vertebrate.
Ostriches live in the wide open landscapes of central, eastern and South-West Africa. As well as being tall and observant, Ostriches also minimise their chances of being predated on, by living in groups and sharing lookout duties, or staying close to sharp-eyed antelope and zebra herds. They can also use their powerful legs to try and outrun a predator, reaching speeds of up to 70 kilometres per hour which makes them the fastest avian runner.