Bustards not “Bastards” are a common bird found in Outback Queensland, particularly in the Maranoa and central highlands regions. Being the size of a large pelican and quite tasty, they were hunted by people regularly for food during the early settlement days. Their numbers dwindled significantly as a result, however in the last twenty plus years their population has been making a substantial comeback.
While this day time bird is likely to be on seen on a BOOBOOK Ecotour feeding in open paddocks, it is rarer to see the breeding male who puts on a spectacular display to attract a mate. He struts about fanning out his long breast feathers and drops his pendulous white breast sac to the ground to make himself look larger and more masculine, not dissimilar to a human puffing out their chest and showing off their muscles to attract a mate.