The 10 biggest birds in the world

Ostrich - world's biggest birds

Top 10 list

Who are the top 10 biggest birds?

When you think about the world’s biggest birds, you probably think of animals like elephants and blue whales, but there are some of the world’s biggest birds. Many of the birds we see in our daily lives are small, weighing only a few grams. Some bird species, however, may reach heights much larger than the tallest humans.

Most of the world’s biggest birds are flightless, allowing them to develop thicker bones and larger bodies. They have evolved additional characteristics to help them avoid predators, such as robust, muscular legs that let them run at great speeds.

However, none of the biggest surviving birds come close to the size of elephant birds, which are members of an extinct ratite family. The biggest of them all weighed approximately 700 kg and stood over 3 m tall, making it the largest bird ever to have existed.

Dalmatian Pelican - biggest birds

10. Dalmatian Pelican

KINGDOM-Animalia
PHYLUM-Chordata
CLASS-Aves
SUBCLASS-Neornithes
INFRACLASS-Neognathae
SUPERORDER-Neoaves
ORDER-Pelecaniformes
FAMILY-Pelecanidae
GENUS-Pelecanus
SPECIES-Pelecanus crispus
WEIGHT-7.3-15 KG

Massive pelican with an unkempt look. Overall, dirt white with a scruffy, upswept crest and black primaries (prominent only in flight). During the mating season, the adult has a bright orange pouch, whereas during the nonbreeding season it has a yellow pouch. It is similar to the Spot-billed Pelican and the Great White Pelican, except it has a light iris, a clean bill with no spotting, and grey legs. In big flocks, it frequents rivers, broad marshes, and estuaries.

09. Wandering Albatross

Wandering Albatross
KINGDOM-Animalia
PHYLUM-Chordata
CLASS-Aves
ORDER-Procellariiformes
FAMILY-Diomedeidae
GENUS-Diomedea
SPECIES-Diomedea exulans
WEIGHT-5.9-12.7 KG

A huge Southern Ocean albatross that breeds locally on inaccessible islands yet travels throughout the world. The plumage is quite diverse, but the underwings are usually white with a little black point.

The only other species that is as huge as a Wandering Albatross is the Royal Albatross, which never exhibits filthy brownish patterns on its head and body or a fully black tail like many Wandering Albatrosses. Juvenile Wandering has a chocolate brown head and body with a white facial patch and grows into adult plumage over many years. Oldest Wandering develops widely white upperwings and a white tail, making older birds impossible to distinguish. Wandering lacks the short black “lips” on the bill of Royal, has a messier, more spotty pattern on the upperwing, and sometimes displays a telltale pinkish stain on the cheeks that Royal does not.

Great Bustard

08. Great Bustard

KINGDOM-Animalia
PHYLUM-Chordata
CLASS-Aves
ORDER-Otidiformes
FAMILY-Otididae
GENUS-Otis
SPECIES-Otis tarda
WEIGHT-3-18 KG

Huge, recognizable, and regal bird of treeless broad grasslands and natural steppes, also seen in low-intensity agricultural regions. Walks in a dignified way, but if disturbed, may sprint rather than fly. The flight is heaving and goose-like. Particularly gregarious throughout the winter. Males are much bigger than females, and the sexes seldom mingle outside of the mating season. Males brush their body and wing feathers forward, turning them white, while burying their head in the plumage in a spectacular “foaming bath” show at leks (display locations).

07. Wandering Albatross

Mute Swan
KINGDOM-Animalia
PHYLUM-Chordata
CLASS-Aves
ORDER-Anseriformes
FAMILY-Anatidae
GENUS-Cygnus
SPECIES-Cygnus olor
WEIGHT-6.5-13 KG

A biggest bird with a long neck, a reddish-orange beak, and a black face. Adults’ bills feature a black knob on top. Immatures have a dark brown body and a gray beak. It is native to northern Europe and Asia, but it has been imported to many areas, where it is now prevalent in ponds, lakes, and calm coastal waters. extremely hostile to native ducks. They are frequently encountered in couples or small family groups.

Wild Turkey

06. Wild Turkey

KINGDOM-Animalia
PHYLUM-Chordata
CLASS-Aves
ORDER-Galliformes
FAMILY-Phasianidae
GENUS-Meleagris
SPECIES-Meleagris gallopavo
WEIGHT-2.5-11 KG

Among North America’s biggest birds A turkey’s appearance is unusual, with its huge body, long legs, and small head. From a distance, it appears black. Small groups are frequently found in open areas near woodlands. In the spring and early summer, gobbling is frequently heard.

05. Greater Rheas

Greater Rheas
KINGDOM-Animalia
PHYLUM-Chordata
CLASS-Aves
ORDER-Struthioniformes
FAMILY-Rheidae
GENUS-Rhea
SPECIES-Rhea americana
WEIGHT-26-36 KG

The biggest bird in South America, it resembles an ostrich and is easily identified. It appears to be tailless and flightless. Overall coloration is gray-brown, with exceptionally long legs and neck and a correspondingly tiny head. Males have a dark brown crest as well as a blackish lower neck and upperparts. Females have lighter coloring. Juveniles resemble adults but are smaller. It prefers wide habitats with dispersed trees and bushes, such as savannas and pampas, where huge populations can congregate. The males are in charge of incubating the eggs and caring for the young.

Emperor Penguins

04. Emperor Penguins

KINGDOM-Animalia
PHYLUM-Chordata
CLASS-Aves
ORDER-Sphenisciformes
FAMILY-Spheniscidae
GENUS-Aptenodytes
SPECIES-Aptenodytes forsteri
WEIGHT-22.7-45.4 KG

This biggest of the penguins, really a regal and dominating figure, is rarely seen outside of Antarctica and its surrounding waters. However, juvenile birds do spread beyond the pack ice. The enormous size and distinct color set this species apart from most other penguins; the King Penguin has similar patterning but is smaller, longer-billed, less bulky overall, and has brighter and more extensive orange markings on the head. breeds in massive ice colonies, with males renowned for spending months caring for the eggs. produces powerful trumpeting calls, especially during courting.

03. Emu

Emu
KINGDOM-Animalia
PHYLUM-Chordata
CLASS-Aves
ORDER-Casuariiformes
FAMILY-Casuariidae
GENUS-Dromaius
SPECIES-Dromaius novaehollandiae
WEIGHT-18-60 KG

This massive flightless bird is only found in Australia and has drooping gray shaggy plumage. Only the imported Ostrich might cause a mistake, but observe Emu’s black head and shaggy-feathered neck. Hatchlings have unique stripes all throughout. Juvenile and juvenile birds have darker feathered necks than adults. It prefers wide land, where it can be seen in loose groups of a few birds to hundreds.

02. Southern Cassowary

KINGDOM-Animalia
PHYLUM-Chordata
CLASS-Aves
ORDER-Casuariiformes
FAMILY-Casuariidae
GENUS-Casuarius
SPECIES-Casuarius casuarius
WEIGHT-29-58.5 KG

A massive flightless bird with black glossy plumage and a big, horn-like plate on a brightly colored head, as well as two red neck wattles. It is unlikely that it will be mistaken for other species. Hatchlings are brown with prominent stripes. Juvenile and immature birds resemble adults, but are browner and lack or grow a head-plate. It can be found crossing roadways or along roadsides in deep tropical vegetation.

01. Ostrich

Ostrich
KINGDOM-Animalia
PHYLUM-Chordata
CLASS-Aves
ORDER-Struthioniformes
FAMILY-Struthionidae
GENUS-Struthio
SPECIES-Struthio camelus
WEIGHT-63-145 KG

No 1 biggest bird in the world is Ostrich. A massive, noticeable, flightless bird with a long neck and strong legs. In breeding plumage, mature males exhibit black-and-white plumage with pinkish skin that is flushed. Females and immatures have a duller gray-brown coloration. Small parties can trek up to several kilometers each day in open and moderately forested areas. The short wings are employed for breeding displays and dust bathing. Long distances can be covered by deep boom calls. In contrast to the pink-skinned Common Ostrich, the similar Somali Ostrich (no range overlap) has slaty-colored skin and pale eyes.


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Find more about birds: 

Bird Identification | Sri Lanka – Wild Lanka

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