cassowary

/kas"euh wer'ee/, n., pl. cassowaries.
any of several large flightless, ratite birds of the genus Casuarius, of Australia, New Guinea, and adjacent islands, characterized by a bony casque on the front of the head.
[1605-15; by uncert. mediation < Central Moluccan kasuwari, kasuwali]

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Any of several species of ratite (family Casuariidae) of the Australo-Papuan region.

Related to the emu, it has been known to kill humans with slashing blows of its feet, which have long, daggerlike claws on the innermost toe. It has a featherless blue head protected by a bony crest and has a black body (immature birds are brownish). It moves rapidly along narrow tracks in the bush. Cassowaries eat fruit and small animals. The largest species is the common, or southern, cassowary(Casuarius casuarius), which stands almost 5 ft (1.5 m) tall.

Common, or southern, cassowary (Casuarius casuarius).

Anthony Mercieca from Root Resources

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bird
(genus Casuarius) 
 any of several species of large flightless birds of the Australo-Papuan region. Cassowaries are the only members of the family Casuariidae and belong to the order Casuariiformes, which also includes the emu. The cassowary has been known to kill humans with slashing blows of its feet: the innermost of its three toes bears a long, daggerlike nail. The bird moves rapidly along narrow tracks in the bush, its naked blue head protected by a bony helmet, or casque. The body is black in adults, brownish in immature birds. The female lays three to six green eggs, each of which is about 13 cm (5 inches) long and weighs 650 g (23 ounces). The male incubates these for about 50 days in a leafy nest on the ground and may also provide most of the early care of the striped young. Cassowaries forage for fruits and small animals. There are three species (counted by some experts as six), each with several races. The common, or southern, cassowary, Casuarius casuarius (see photograph—>), which inhabits New Guinea, nearby islands, and Australia, is the largest—almost 1.5 m (5 feet) tall—and has two long, red wattles on the throat.

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Cassowary — Cas so*wa*ry, n.; pl. {Cassowaries}. [Malay kasu[=a]ri.] (Zo[ o]l.) A large bird, of the genus {Casuarius}, found in the east Indies. It is smaller and stouter than the ostrich. Its head is armed with a kind of helmet of horny substance,… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • cassowary — 1610s, via French or Dutch, from Malay kasuari …   Etymology dictionary

  • cassowary — ► NOUN (pl. cassowaries) ▪ a very large flightless bird related to the emu, native mainly to New Guinea. ORIGIN Malay …   English terms dictionary

  • cassowary — [kas′ə wer΄ē] n. pl. cassowaries [Malay kasuārī] any of a family (Casuariidae) of large, flightless birds of Australia and New Guinea with a brightly colored, featherless neck and head: with the larger emus, they form a unique order… …   English World dictionary

  • Cassowary — Taxobox name = Cassowary image width = 200px image caption = Southern Cassowary regnum = Animalia phylum = Chordata classis = Aves ordo = Struthioniformes familia = Casuariidae genus = Casuarius genus authority = Brisson, 1760 subdivision ranks …   Wikipedia

  • cassowary — /ˈkæsəwəri / (say kasuhwuhree) noun (plural cassowaries) 1. any of several large three toed flightless ratite birds constituting the genus Casuarius, of Australia, New Guinea and nearby islands, superficially resembling the ostrich but smaller.… …   Australian English dictionary

  • Cassowary — Helmkasuar Helmkasuar (Casuarius casuarius) Systematik Klasse: Vögel (Aves) Unterklasse …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • cassowary —   n. emu like bird of Australasia.    ♦ cassowary tree, casuarina …   Dictionary of difficult words

  • cassowary — kazuarai statusas T sritis zoologija | vardynas atitikmenys: lot. Casuarius angl. cassowary vok. Kasuar, m rus. казуар, m pranc. casoar, m ryšiai: platesnis terminas – kazuariniai siauresnis terminas – nykštukinis kazuaras siauresnis terminas –… …   Paukščių pavadinimų žodynas

  • cassowary — noun (plural waries) Etymology: Malay kĕsuari, from an Austronesian language of the Moluccas Date: 1611 any of a genus (Casuarius) of large ratite birds chiefly of New Guinea and northern Australia that have a horny casque on the head and are… …   New Collegiate Dictionary

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