The Incident with the Emu

We got back onto the main highway off from Stokes Look out to head back to Rawnsley Park and this is where we encountered “the Emu!!!!” (cue music from Jaws). We were just driving along the road, minding our own business when we noticed 2 emu’s at the side of the road and slowed right down, as Australian animals have a tendency to run in front of the car like they’re on a suicide mission.

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The emus turned around and started to run away, so we increased our speed a little as we passed them and continued on with our conversation, then all of a sudden one Emu turned around and BAMMM ran straight into the side of the 4wd. Trying to getting over the initial shock, we pulled over and looked back to see if the Emu was ok, it was obviously not, as it was flailing around like a “chicken without a head”. We thought we must have broken its neck because its head hit the side mirror.

Being responsible people, we pulled over further to ensure we wouldn’t cause an accident and jumped out to check the Emu and/or move the body off of the road (as we did not have phone reception to contact any rangers). I came around the car to and our driver was frozen at the door, I asked if he was okay and he said “I’m pretty sure the emu is dead” I looked back at the emu lying on the road, it was still “kicking”.

I turned back to see a very gruesome sight! The Emu’s head was hanging off the side mirror! I felt like we were in some kind of horror movie!!!!! It’s weird though because there was no blood on the side of the car…..Poor thing!  We removed the head then moved the body off the road. (And no sorry, we didn’t take any photos, it was pretty gruesome!) Still to this day, I have no idea how we decapitated the Emu, we weren’t going that fast, it’s like its head just “popped off”. Check out our guide of “What to do it you hit a Kangaroo (or any animal)

After that incident we drove to “Huck’s look out” to have a sugary soft drink and have somewhere safe to park. It shouldn’t be surprising that hitting an animal can be a shock to the system but when its head falls off!! You feel a little frazzled!

Have you every experienced anything this crazy? Please share you crazy story with us, it will make us feel less like monsters!


  • Samantha King

    Sam, a seasoned traveler across four continents and 49 countries, is a leading authority in travel planning. Her website, Travelling King, offers tailored itineraries and expert guides for seamless trips. Sam's expertise in luxury travel, fast travel, and destination guides keeps her at the forefront of the travel community.

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  1. Ok when you mentioned last week you had had ‘an incident with emu’ I suspected you may have hit one…but decapitation?! No, that never crossed my mind!

  2. Ew that is pretty horrible. I must say in all my years of camping and 4WDing I have never seen or heard of anything like that happening!!! Hope your next adventure does not involve anything this gruesome.

  3. Oh poor thing, I dread this kind of thing happening when I’m driving. Although not having been to Australia for a few years I’m guessing it’s not going to be an emu running in front of me!

  4. Hey Becky!!
    Be glad you don’t have great birds running in front of your car!
    It’s pretty sad and ewwwwy!! But I guess it doesn’t happen everyday right!

  5. oh wow… quite hard to think on how the head got cut off… i agree it’s a bit sad and gruesome… can’t imagine myself being in that situation…

  6. *being in “your” situation that time* lol as I read back my last comment, it sounded funny. safe travels…

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