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Great Bustard
By EWilloughby   |   Watch
230 12 4K (1 Today)
Published: July 16, 2015
© 2015 - 2019 EWilloughby

The great bustard, Otis tarda, is a gruiform endemic to southern and central Europewith winter populations stretching across temperate Asia. This bustard, the only member of its genus, is one of the heaviest flying birds in the world, with males reaching over 3 feet in height and up to 40 pounds (though averages seem to center around 25). They are also one of the most sexually dimorphic bird species in the world, with males being up to four times the size of the females.

As with most birds with much larger dimorphic males, these bustards are polygamous and males compete, often quite viciously, for the rights to mate with up to five females. And like a number of gruiforms, the males strut and puff in large leks in order to gain attention of the females, who watch and choose. Males have a flamboyant and highly species-specific display routine that apparently drives the ladies wild. 

The great bustard is currently categorized as vulnerable, mostly as a result of habitat loss from increased agriculturalization of its native breeding habitats. 

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Adobe Photoshop CS4 Macintosh
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Comments (12)
Bleskobleska-Yandere's avatar
It looks like alive! Great artwork :3
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Kazuma27's avatar
Kazuma27|Hobbyist General Artist
Here in Italy we call this bird "otarda", and this portrait, simply put, is perfect.
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23aroth's avatar
is it okay if I use this in a project of mine but change where they live
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herofan135's avatar
herofan135|Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Looks incredible, love the colours!
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AntoninJury's avatar
Pretty feathers, thanks for share !!
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BurningResurrection's avatar
We have a number of them living here
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keight's avatar
Excellent work, Emily.
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Alexanderlovegrove's avatar
Absolutely stunning!
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grisador's avatar
İts so sad that they're almost entirely hunted to extinction illegaly; thought no laws are even enforced.

Still amazing artwork !
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Dontknowwhattodraw94's avatar
Dontknowwhattodraw94|Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Beautiful work :)
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jambe's avatar
Excellent rendering.

Worthy of note is Chris Packham's Tweet of the Day about the Great Bustard, a two-minute overview of the bird & its reintroduction to Britain punctuated by its, er, unique vocalization:

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LeahCK's avatar
LeahCK|Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Wow, so beautiful!
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