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Ratites as Pets

Hello everyone. This is my first time posting here, and happened across this board while searching for current emu farmer websites. I won't get into my story of how I got into keeping ratites (emus and rheas) as I tend to be somewhat long-fingered on the subject and don't want to make this too long. If you'd like to read about my ratite story, as well as see a few pictures of my current adult trio of rheas, you can do so here: http://rivervalleysnakes.com/Rhea%20Page.htm. I am currently incubating 4 emu eggs I bought from a local bird breeder in hopes to getting a couple of chicks from them. As I'm sure many of you know, emus are quite a bit more personable than rheas. Also, since emus were what I started out with as a youngster back in '96, I guess I have a sort of 'bond' with them and they will always be my favorites.

Like the lady back in '03 who posted the thread called "Pets," I too tout the pet quality aspect of these giant birds. For me, they have never been anything else. Don't get me wrong, I think the industry aspect is great and I hope that it is able to stabilize after years of uncertainty. My heart goes out to every single person who invested their lives into the market in the 80s and early 90s before it crashed. I can only imagine what those people must've went through (while at the same time thinking that really, they shot themselves in the foot in the end). Anyway, I guess the whole point of posting this is to first off, introduce myself as a ratite keeper here in Arkansas, and secondly, to try to get in contact with other current emu keepers, both for the industry and for pets. I personally don't think that ratites have to be exclusively one or the other, and am certainly not here to change anyone's mind on the issue, but I see my big birds in one way and others see them differently. However, in the end, for both spectrums, the goals should be the same: stability of the market to insure a good future for these animals.

I guess I'll close with my wishing everyone a great laying and hatching season. If anyone on the board has emu eggs and/or chicks available for a reasonable sum and is willing to ship, I'm keeping my eyes wide open incase my eggs don't do so well. Also, if anyone is interested in rhea eggs and/or chicks in the coming season, I have two females that are both known for large egg yields and will be doing my absolute best to insure they are as comfortable and well-fed to provide incentive for another year of high productivity. My male and one of the females are capable of producing white babies, so I should have gray and white chicks available, as well as eggs with a 66% and 50% likelihood of containing white chicks. My prices will be extremely reasonable.

Feel free to contact me at rvsnakes@direcway.com for direct e-mail, or on MSN Messenger at najak82@hotmail.com, or by phone at 479-477-0434. I look foward to hearing from you folks!

Re: Ratites as Pets

If you are interested in chatting with other emu farmers, please join our chat group at http://groups.yahoo.com/group/emufarm . The American Emu Association is another group you should check out if you are interested in industry news and meeting other farmers. I believe that Arkansas has an emu association there. This summer the AEA convention is going to be in Mobile Alabama.