How wonderful to be living in a place, where cassowaries do not only visit our garden almost daily for most of the year, but where one can even observe them mating (also see our blog from May 2012).
This year the local male cassowary raised three chicks, which were 7 months old when the female started to seek out his company at the beginning of May. Initially, he wasn’t interested in her advances, but by mid May the family had separated. We now have a single juvenile, and the other two travelling together, visiting. The adults started courting and mating in early June. This morning they performed in our garden, unperturbed by the noisy truck on Black Mountain Road (our local council is presently repairing the road, and we do fear for the cassowaries, who are frequently crossing. The juveniles are not as wary of traffic as the adults).
Sometimes we can tell that cassowary mating has taken place, without having actually witnessed it. Have a look at theses skid marks:
Minutes after this morning’s mating, the adults had just disappeared into the forest (we could still hear one of them booming several times in the distance), the single juvenile showed up for its breakfast of palm fruits. Several of our palm trees are providing a feast for wompoo and superb fruit-doves, catbirds, spectacled flying- foxes, white-tailed rats and cassowaries.