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Males alone are responsible for brooding and rearing the chicks. For 6 months they look after their chicks and will defend them aggressively. Lost chicks are sometimes even adopted by other cocks. At a body height of up to one meter, lesser rheas are considerably smaller than the greater rheas (up to 1.4 m). Their wings are relatively long, enabling it to maneuver better at running speeds of up to 60 km/h.
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|Classification||Order: rheiformes; family: rheid|
|Diet||Grasses, seeds, herbs, roots, fruit, insects, small reptiles and amphibians; drink very little as their diet contains a lot of water|
|Habitat||Grassland steppes, scrublands and grazing lands up to elevations of 4,500 m|
|Reproduction||Males build a flat nest hollow, in which several females lay up to 30 eggs; only the male is responsible for brooding and rearing the chicks; incubation period: 36–45 days|