Ostriches in South Africa


ostrich in South AfricaAn ostrich can kill. Beware the threatened ostrich guarding its eggs, those powerful legs not only run like the clappers but also deliver a hefty blow. Their brains are fortunately for us, pea sized, which means that ostriches can be farmed. Their skin makes ostrich leather handbags and wallets with that good-pimple effect that fetches sky high prices in the market place. Their meat is sold at restaurants far and wide and easily matches steaks for tenderness and beats them hands down when comparing for least cholesterol. The feathers are used for a host of products including luxuriant and fluffy feather boas in rainbow shades, tickly feather dusters and garnish a host of trinkets and ornaments.

If you visit ostriches on a South African far, you’re in for a great day out. There is the opportunity to hand feed an ostrich which is often attempted only by the brave and those who really do not mind receiving bruises on their palms. You may also be permitted to ride an ostrich. Firstly you need to sign an indemnity  form accepting all liability of performing such an unnatural act. Your mount will have a bag over its head whilst you mount so that it doesn’t suffer a heart attack or peck your eyes out before you get on its back. The hanging on for dear life, the bag will be removed and the startled ostrich will attempt to dislodge this great encumberance that has been foisted upon it to the amusement of all the spectators who will be busy taking snapshots to ensure that they capture the moment your backside hits the ostrich dung on the floor so that they can send it to all your friends in Facebook later.
You may be fortunate enough to witness trained light-weight ostrich jockeys racing their ostriches and showing you how it could be done by experts.
There is the educative part of the tour when you find out about the life of a farmed ostrich, how to distinguish the reasonable female (brown) from the aggressive male (black) followed by a trip through the gift shop.
Seriously though, it’s an enjoyable and amusing experience, mainly due to the antics of your fellow tourists.
Holiday accommodation near Oodtshoorn for visits to Ostrich Farms.