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Maleo

Macrocephalon maleo

Range

  • The Indonesian island of Sulawesi

Habitat

  • Tropical lowlands

Diet

  • Fruits
  • Seeds
  • Mollusks
  • Ants
  • Termites
  • Beetles
  • Small invertebrates

They belong to a group of birds called megapodes (“large feet”).

This species exists nowhere else on the planet but the Indonesian island of Sulawesi. Often called “incubator birds”, adults bury their enormous eggs in the seashore’s hot sand and abandon them, allowing the sand’s heat to incubate them during development. Two months later, the self-sufficient chicks emerge ready to fly. The chicks are able to find fruits, seeds, and invertebrates to eat as well as defend themselves from monitor lizards, reticulated pythons, wild pigs, and cats.

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