Discover the incredible diversity of the avian world with these top 10 largest birds, ranging from flightless ostriches to soaring eagles. Each of these majestic creatures is unique and fascinating, showcasing the amazing variety of bird species that exist. Don’t forget to check out the smallest birds in the world too, and marvel at the incredible range of sizes and shapes found in the avian kingdom.
This ranking below lists the top 10 largest bird species in the world, based on their average weight. This is a commonly used metric to compare the sizes of different bird species, although other metrics such as wing length or height can also be used. It’s important to note that the use of different metrics may result in slightly different rankings, depending on the specific species being compared:
The ostrich is the largest bird species in the world, weighing in at an average of 250 pounds and standing up to 9 feet tall. They are flightless birds that are native to Africa and are known for their distinctive appearance, with long necks and legs, and fluffy feathers. With their impressive size and unique characteristics, ostriches are a popular subject of fascination for avian enthusiasts and casual observers alike.
The emu is the second-largest bird species in the world, weighing in at an average of 100 pounds and standing up to 6 feet tall. They are also flightless and native to Australia, where they are often raised for their meat and eggs. Although they are not as well-known as ostriches, emus are fascinating birds with a unique set of characteristics and behaviors that make them an interesting subject of study.
3. Southern Cassowary
The southern cassowary is a large flightless bird that is native to Australia, New Guinea, and nearby islands. They can weigh up to 130 pounds and stand up to 6 feet tall, making them one of the largest bird species in the world. They are known for their striking blue and black plumage and the distinctive casque on their heads, which serves as a protective helmet. With their impressive size and unique features, southern cassowaries are a popular subject of fascination for avian enthusiasts and researchers alike.
4. Northern Cassowary
The northern cassowary is another flightless bird species that is native to New Guinea and nearby islands. They are slightly smaller than the southern cassowary, weighing up to 110 pounds and standing up to 5.5 feet tall. Like their southern counterparts, northern cassowaries are known for their distinctive appearance and interesting behaviors, making them a popular subject of study among bird enthusiasts and researchers.
5. Greater Rhea
The greater rhea is a flightless bird that is native to South America. They can weigh up to 88 pounds and stand up to 5 feet tall. They are known for their long legs and necks and their distinctive feathers.
6. Emperor Penguin
The emperor penguin is the largest of all penguin species, weighing in at an average of 75 pounds and standing up to 4 feet tall. They are native to Antarctica and are known for their distinctive black and white plumage.
7. Dalmatian Pelican
The Dalmatian pelican is one of the largest flying birds in the world, with a wingspan of up to 11 feet. They can weigh up to 33 pounds and are native to Europe and Asia. They are known for their striking white feathers and bright orange beaks.
8. Andean Condor
The Andean condor is a large bird of prey that is native to the Andes mountains in South America. They have a wingspan of up to 10 feet and can weigh up to 33 pounds. They are known for their distinctive black and white feathers and their ability to soar for hours on end.
9. California Condor
The California condor is another large bird of prey that is native to the United States. They have a wingspan of up to 10 feet and can weigh up to 26 pounds. They were once on the brink of extinction but have made a comeback thanks to conservation efforts.
10. Steller’s Sea Eagle
The Steller’s sea eagle is one of the largest eagles in the world, with a wingspan of up to 8 feet. They are native to Russia and can weigh up to 20 pounds. They are known for their distinctive white heads and their impressive hunting skills.
Here’s a summary table comparing the main characteristics of the 10 largest birds in the world:
|Up to 9 feet
|Up to 6 feet
|Up to 130 pounds
|Up to 6 feet
|Australia and New Guinea
|Up to 110 pounds
|Up to 5.5 feet
|New Guinea and nearby islands
|Up to 88 pounds
|Up to 5 feet
|Up to 75 pounds
|Up to 4 feet
|Up to 33 pounds
|Wingspan up to 11 feet
|Europe and Asia
|Up to 33 pounds
|Wingspan up to 10 feet
|Andes mountains in South America
|Up to 26 pounds
|Wingspan up to 10 feet
|Steller’s Sea Eagle
|Up to 20 pounds
|Wingspan up to 8 feet
Fun Facts about the Largest Flying Animals
- Ostriches can run faster than horses and have the largest eyes of any land animal.
- Emus have two sets of eyelids, one for blinking and one to keep out dust.
- The cassowary has a reputation for being dangerous due to its sharp claws and territorial behavior.
- Andean condors can soar at high altitudes in the Andes mountains.
- Steller’s Sea Eagles have been known to catch fish weighing up to 7 kg.
These are the top 10 largest birds in the world, ranging from flightless ostriches to soaring eagles. Each one is unique and fascinating in its own way, and they serve as a reminder of the incredible diversity of the avian world.