Emus are highly mobile and range over a wide area. Any barriers that restrict emu movement can have a major impact by reducing access to natural food sources, isolating and preventing breeding and nesting, and blocking escape from predators or bushfires.
The Coastal Emu travels big distances and are found in many vegetation types throughout the coastal areas such as dry heath, dry sclerophyll forests, rainforest and wetlands. As they move they are always browsing on fruits, nuts and seeds where studies show they can have up to 1000 seeds in a 100gram scat or dung, making them an important seed dispersal vector. Emu movement is therefore critical in maintaining a genetic diversity of plants across large areas, many of which threatened or rare.
Busy roads, thick vegetation such as dense weeds, new residential areas, overgrown tracks and fences are the typical barriers impacting on emus. Fences in particular prove to be a significant barrier where individuals and family groups have often been seen walking up and down fence lines for hours looking for a way through.
The Coastal Emu Alliance has developed this Emu Gateway Video to help landholders build their own emu fence gateways to allow safe passage of the emu across their entire coastal corridor.
Watch this video