Latin name: Apteryx
Average lifespan: up to 40 years in the wild
Size: 45 cm
Weight: average of 3.3 kg
Group name: Flock
Kiwis are about the size of a domestic chicken and are by far the smallest living ratites. The related group of birds that is called ratites has close known relatives like emus and cassowaries in Australia and also the now-extinct moa of New Zealand.
Kiwis are unique to New Zealand and they have evolved without any land mammal predators or competitors.
What does a Kiwi look like?
The Kiwi is a truly unique bird. It cannot fly, it has brown-greyish hair like feathers, no tail and strong legs. It has more characteristics of a mammal then a bird. So this bird has wings but cannot fly, it's feathers are more like fur. It has a great sense of smell and is the only bird in the world with nostrils at the end of its beak. It has whiskers just like a cat. Kiwis have three toes.
Where does the Kiwi live?
There are five different Kiwi species. Not one of them can fly and they are all found in New Zealand. Every Kiwi species has a different habitat preference. North Island brown kiwis prefer bushes and forests. Kiwis are mostly nocturnal forest dwellers, they create daytime nests in their burrows, hollow logs or dense bushes.
What does a Kiwi eat?
Kiwis are nocturnal, so after nightfall they come out of their burrows to find their dinner. They use their nostrils to snif out their food and their beak to dig in the ground. Kiwis are omnivores and they eat a variety of insects, like worms, spiders, bugs, grubs, crayfish, frogs and eels. They also eat fruits, roots, berries and native plants. The small eyes of the Kiwi makes it hard to see at night, instead it feels, smells and hears its way around.
What is special about the Kiwi?
The Kiwi bird is special because it is so very different from other birds and has so many mammal type qualities. It has wings but it cannot fly, it has whiskers, nostrils, a great sense of smell, no tail, it has bone marrow like humans, and feathers that seem more like a fur.
Did you know about these Kiwi facts?
Kiwi birds live in pairs and mate for life.
Kiwi are omnivorous and although worms form a major part of their diet, they will also readily eat woodlice, millipedes, centipedes, slugs, snails, spiders, insects, seeds, berries and plant material.
Kiwi feed at night and probe into the ground with their bill up to a depth of 12cm.
The Kiwi is the only bird in the world with nostrils at the end of its beak
Kiwi lives in the underground burrows. It uses its strong legs and beak to dig the ground.
Kiwi have a strong musky smell that is irresistible to dogs
A female kiwi can lay up to 100 eggs in her lifetime.
Download free Kiwi wallpapers, click on the image to open the large version.
Kiwi wallpaper 1
Kiwi wallpaper 2
Kiwi wallpaper 3
Kiwi Coloring pages
Print free Kiwi coloring pages, click on the image to open the large version.