It’s time for another dose of SCIENCE! Last week, I did a post about two extinct birds – the Haast’s eagle, an “apex predator” who preyed primarily on the large flightless bird called the moa, which was probably delicious. Seriously, I’m getting really hungry just thinking about them. Those drumsticks! I can’t even! Anyway…moas went on to become hunted to extinction by native Maori people in what is now New Zealand. I think that really, really sucks. What I’m going to present to you now is a scientific theory that you can all take with a grain of salt, like some people do with theories such as evolution, global warming, and vaccinating children. Without further ado, I present to you the case of the cassowary, a flightless bird native to Papua New Guinea and northern Australia.
This bird really, really hates YOU!
It’s the third tallest and second-heaviest living bird, smaller only than the ostrich and emu. But here’s where it gets interesting…this bird is a BADASS. It’s like Samuel L. Jackson’s soul in a body of a flightless bird. They are very shy, but when provoked they are capable of inflicting injuries, occasionally fatal, to dogs and people. I’ll translate that to, “don’t start nothin’ won’t be nothin’.” Even if you try to eat these birds, the natives joke that you’re supposed to throw a stone in the pot with the cassowary – and when the stone’s tender enough to eat, so is the cassowary. So my theory is this – it’s the cassowary’s job to avenge the transgressions visited upon the moa, which is probably one of its ancestors. And was very, very delicious. The moa basically stood around and allowed those bastard humans to set up moa drumstick stands at ALL of the renaissance faires. But of course we know renaissance faires were invented much, much later (duh). Those poor moas just didn’t seem to put up too much of a fight. Cassowaries, on the other hand? They ain’t having any of that! Let’s all take a moment to show some respect to this badass bird! Some REAL respect, especially since it’s now endangered in Queensland, mainly due to loss of habitat. Let’s not lose these awesome birds!