What Kinds of Birds Do Not Fly?

kinds-birds-fly Credit: Jon Bunting/Flickr/CC-BY-2.0

Some of the most common examples of flightless birds include emus, ostriches and penguins. Cassowaries, kiwis and the kakapo parrot are other types of flightless birds. There are around 57 main species of flightless birds.

There are both very small and very large flightless birds. Some of the largest are the emus and ostriches, which can exceed the height of an average human. These birds face few of the challenges of their smaller flightless brethren, since they have powerful legs and large claws that keep them protected from potential predators.

Smaller flightless birds, such as kiwis and the kakapo, are much less dangerous. Kiwis are native to New Zealand, which has a large number of flightless birds. There are five species of kiwi, and they have a declining population. The kakapo parrot is one of the rarest and most critically endangered flightless birds, with only around 127 known in existence. This parrot also resides in New Zealand.

Penguins are one of the most famous of flightless birds, and there are 17 species within this type of bird, all of which are flightless. Penguins live in many regions, although the most well-known area for penguins is Antarctica. There are six species of penguin in New Zealand, with four in the Antarctic region.