South Africa’s Klein Karoo

Apr 15, 1988

We were very lucky to have been offered the chance to spend the morning at an ostrich hatchery outside Oudtshoorn, in South Africa’s Klein Karoo (little desert), home to the world’s largest ostrich (Struthio camelus) population. Ostriches were very rare in the 1700 and 1800s as their feathers were popular in 19th century fashion with upper class ladies, high ranking military officials and posh politicians. The richer or more important you were, the more ostrich feathers you had. Ostrich preservation became a necessity after this era to ensure the livelihood of these magnificent birds.

As the chicks grow older within these hatcheries, they are moved from indoor-only nurseries, to both indoor and outdoor to finally an all outdoor location for them to grow. It was truly an AMAZING experience to spend the day here learning all about the past and bright future ahead for the ostrich species.