The Versatile Ostrich

The bird with personality!

And it is quite bazaar to even call ostriches, birds, as they can’t fly. But they can reach speeds of 43 miles per hour on land (using their wings as rudders), covering 10 to 16 feet in a single stride. This makes them tricky to catch.  They can outrun most of their predators when they are fully grown, and thus grow rather rapidly as a defence mechanism.

Although there is evidence of ostriches existing in Europe and in Asia, they are now only found, natively, in the wild, in Africa. Tre indigenous of the Little Karoo (the area between Uniondale and Willowmore in the semi-desert region of South Africa), where they are most happy. They love the hot, arid climate and thrive to produce 40-60 eggs per season.

The Karoo has the perfect conditions to grow Lucerne, which forms the biggest part of the ostrich’s diet. The ostriches enjoy the gravelly soil which contains stones they swallow to use as “choppers” to grind their food. Another huge environmental advantage is that the ostrich’s digestive system produces much less methane gas than other livestock.

Klein Karoo International (KKI), based in the heart of the Little Karoo, in Oudtshoorn, is the world’s leading producers of ostrich derived goods – meat, leather and feathers.

Ostrich Meat

Using sustainable, ethical and environmentally and animal welfare friendly farming practises, KKI have become the world’s foremost producer of ostrich meat. The delicious meat is versatile, tender and juicy and fully endorsed by the South African Heart Foundation as a healthy alternative to read meat.

Ostrich Leather

Since 1970, leather processing at Klein Karoo has advanced tremendously using knowledge accumulated since the mid-1940s. And with technological advancements and on-going research the leather production has produced the highest quality exotic leather from farm-reared ostriches.  

The Klein Karoo represents more than 800 farmer members which makes it the biggest supplier of ostrich leather in the world, offering products in 37 standard colours in its range of more than 300.

Ostrich Feathers

Klein Karoo feathers are of the finest quality, gracing, amongst others, the Moulin Rouge, the Rio Carnival and in luxury fashion-houses, stages and weddings across the globe. 

The ostrich is the world’s most interesting bird. It has only two toes, can reach 7 to 9 feet in height and can live for 30 to 40 years.

Ostrich meat is delicious, the leather is gorgeous, and their feathers fabulous!

The African Gift Collection is proud to have Klein Karoo feathers in our Karoo Angels!

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