Where For Art Thou Cassowary?

During our Port Douglas vacay Little Vick educated me on “Cassowaries”. To be frank, I thought the kid was drunk on imagination and spinning one of his biggest porkies ever. The yarn had full details about their capabilities including an instinct for attacking and dishing out a seriously dangerous, karate chopping kick. I’d never heard of birds thinking they were Bruce Lee so I just nodded and allowed him to think he knew all about this mysterious made up bird, but the facts kept coming. Turns out this kid is a walking Wikipedia and sounding like the Steve Irwin of Cassowaries!

Kinder has really taught him to free up his imagination or as I see it, embellish things. I assumed this was the case here. I tried to let him know that I knew this was all a bit of a pumped up sketch only for Mr Vick to deliver some sobering news.

Turns out I’m the dill because I was being educated correctly by my 3 year old. Mummies don’t know everything.

Well, it’s news to me.

The exciting news for my little Cassowary expert was that we were not too far from the local hang out of these glorified Emu’s. On occasion they can be spotted in The Daintree Rainforest which neighbors Port Douglas which we just happened to be visiting the very next day.

I was warned in the event that we did come face to face with a Cassowary I should keep my distance to avoid a bird kick to the face. This kid can put his parent on way too well.

We set off the next day and the word on some little lips was Cassowaries. Cassowaries. Cassowaries.

I was thinking “just let there be a parade of flippin’ high kicking Cassowaries pleeease”.

The feverish excitement only doubled every time we saw one of these:

cassowary sign 2

{Excuse the iPhone dodgy smodgy quality}

No matter how many times I explained that a Cassowary sign didn’t automatically mean we’d see one, Little Vick would scream “Cassowarrrrry Siiiiign!!” every. single. time.  Of course there was one every km and a half from Port Douglas all the way to Cape Tribulation which is a good 70km’s or so.

If I didn’t know what the word Cassowary was before, I sure ruddy did now.

When we arrived at Cape Tribulation I wanted to get my lazy on and lounge about. Little Vick was on high alert for any fierce Cassowaries who might come running across the beach right for us. I tried to convince him that indeed we had discovered a Cassowary when this trotted up to us and tried to nick our lunch. The kid wasn’t falling for nuthin’. This was apparently just some kind of local foul. Not the real dealo, just a fake.


After some freckling up we wanted to get deeper in to the hinterland of the Cassowary. The kid wasn’t going to let us off the hook so we went to The Daintree Discovery Centre which has a pretty wicked bridge across the top of the forest and views of the canopy. Super great for the oldies and the kiddies AND they have a Cassowary webcam! Little Vick came alight when he heard, not just one, but TWO wild Cassowaries had been spotted right there that very morning. Cassowary searching radar eyes switched on and did not relent the entire visit! Much to his disappointment all we could see was a whole lot of trees. Who cares if we were in the oldest rainforest in the world?!?

1-DSC_01761-DSC_0166{The Cassowary catchers team}

I had no idea what he’d actually do if one materialised out of the bushes anyway. He’d probably lose his shite considering he normally has a adamant fear of birds.

Can you guess how this all ended considering these birds are extremely rare? Yep, a whole day of serenading Cassowaries ended in disappointment. Not even a trip down some dodgy, beaten up track into the forest came up with the feathery goods. Little Vick expressed his dismay: “What’s gotten into these birds? Where are they? Why would they want to hide?”

I wonder.

With one little broken heart we felt we had little option to book a visit to the Wildlife Habitat zoo for the very next day to meet with the highly anticipated Bruce Lee of birds, where one happy Little Vick was made.


I missed it because I was gallivanting on a yacht with a champagne glass in hand but he came home with some tall tale about the bite on his arm that I was fairly certain was from a hungry mozzie, was actually a pecking wound from a Cassowary!

Now there was the MASSIVE porky!

Do you know what a Cassowary is?? Am I the only dummy?

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11 Responses to Where For Art Thou Cassowary?

  1. Oh I’m glad you saw one in the end!! He would have been devo if he had missed it.
    Also super impressed you missed the zoo in favour of champagne on a yacht. You’re a clever lady. :)

  2. I’ve travelled up to that area many times over the last forty years and never seen a flipping cassowary! I think their population was depleted a bit after Cyclone Yasi. They are quite savage though (reputedly). How cute your little cassowary expert sounds :)

    • Vicki says:

      Yes, they’re very very rare now. I think they’ve been working hard to save them. I’m kinda glad we didn’t come face to face with one, they do sound a bit on the nasty side :) Thanks for dropping by x

  3. Nup never heard of it but maybe that’s cos I’m a Kiwi?! Love this story, isn’t it funny how they pick things up and have a bee in their bonnet about stuff! Lovely photos, you look fantastic!

  4. Love that your kid educated you about the cassowary. My son is a walking encyclopedia too…… And They’re a pretty unusual bird aren’t they…how much more time do you have you in FNQ? If you have time then travel to Etty Bay (just South of Innisfail) – if you’re there around midday a ‘daddy’ cassowary is a regular visitor & normally takes a stroll along the beach and around the caravan park – sometimes with chicks in tow. The next best spot is Mission Beach – again the beach (southern end) OR the caravan park. Hope you enjoy the rest of your stay up north….

  5. Do you have the Nature Channel or something? How the hell does this kid know so much about birds, man? Could be a genius.

  6. […] you think of iconic Aussie landmarks The Great Barrier Reef and The Daintree Rainforest are the big stars, that’s why I felt totally honored to be able to experience them during our […]

  7. Grace says:

    I had no idea what a Cassowary is! And isn’t it annoying, uh, I mean endearing how our children just seem to never let up on certain things?! Good thing he saw one in the end, while you were having some bubbly, no less! :)

  8. Francesca says:

    What an adventure! My kids love Cassowaries. My now 7-year-old first saw one at a zoo when she was about 2. She called it the big bird with a party hat on its head – the name stuck. That’s now what we call cassowaries!

  9. […] A CASSOWARY!!!!!! (If you haven’t read about the obsession with Cassowaries you can catch up here). He’s been practicing the kick up and down the lounge singing “cassowary kick, […]

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