Territorial Ostrich Dances at Mom to Protect His Girlfriends

Occurred on April 4, 2022 / North Okanagan, Canada

Info from Licensor: My partner and I have an ostrich farm in North Okanagan, Canada. It is A LOT OF WORK! We logged the forested property and developed/fenced the land for livestock. We are blessed to have my 72-year-old mom live with us, and help with feeding and watering the animals, and other various tasks that she can handle/wants me to take on. She even CHOPS wood! In the video, Mom had just returned from a store run, (hence the grocery bags) and Ricky (the ostrich) danced for her, as he does every single time she walks by his paddock, which is multiple times daily. Mom apparently wasn’t phased by Ricky’s display, adding to the humor. Not only does mom see the big dino-bird do this multiple times a day, but if you look closely, you’ll notice that mom gets her phone out and then starts filming what’s in front of her. The day before, we had a big wind storm which blew a big tree over, landing on a horse paddock fence, our front yard fence, and over the driveway. Mom was videotaping it—probably to post on her social media! There is a common misconception that the rooster’s exhibition is solely a flirtatious ritual or mating dance, indicating that he is showing off for my mom because he’s in love. Albeit it is true that Ostriches can sometimes fall for their caregivers, it is not the case here with big boy Ricky, which would be evidenced by approaching him closely or actually going into his pen. Don’t try this at home, folks! Ricky wants to kill mom. Ricky wants to kill anybody that comes close to his territory, where his lady hens are. Even though Ricky and his girlfriends have a couple of acres to themselves, Ricky is still extremely aggressive and possessive over his land. In fact, I myself, his primary caregiver, have been attacked on a few occasions by the big rooster! Luckily I was holding buckets and held them out in front of me so that when he kicked, which is designed to kill a lion, by the way, he got the bucket and not my abdomen. This gave me time to scoot around a nearby tree and have my partner distract him until I left the paddock. I digress! In this video, Ricky tries really hard to prove how big and beautiful and powerful he is, but this will simmer down after breeding season in the winter. Then he becomes a puppy dog.