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HomenewsDesaru Ostrich Farm: Largest In Malaysia With Family-Friendly Activities Like $0.90 Bird...

Desaru Ostrich Farm: Largest In Malaysia With Family-Friendly Activities Like $0.90 Bird Feeding

Desaru Ostrich Farm, Johor

With all the buzz surrounding this beach town in Johor, we don’t have to tell you that there are plenty of fun things to do in Desaru. Of these, Desaru Ostrich Farm is a great addition to your itinerary, especially if you’re on holiday with young ones. You’ll get to say hi to about a hundred of these giant birds, feed them, and even get to try an ostrich egg omelette.

Meet the friendly giants & grab the chance to feed them

But first, a quick story about the farm. In the late 90s, an ex-military pilot decided to leave the RSAF and go into farming. This Singaporean went across the border, bought a plot of land, and started rearing ostriches after being enamoured by these birds on a previous trip to South Africa. Thus, the Desaru Ostrich Farm came into existence.

Desaru Ostrich Farm - birds

Located just 1.5 hours from the Woodlands checkpoint, the farm is the largest one of its kind in Malaysia and home to over 100 ostriches. It’s also just a 10-minute drive from Desaru Mini Zoo so you can cover both places within one afternoon.

Apart from getting to see the world’s largest bird up close, you’ll go home with tonnes of trivia about ostriches. Once you’ve got your entrance tickets and gone into the farm, the caretaker greets you with a 5-minute-long introduction peppered with fun facts like how ostriches can live up to 60 years old and females can lay about 50-60 eggs in a year.

Desaru Ostrich Farm - free roaming birdMales have red beaks while females have grey beaks.

He’ll also tell you how to differentiate between the males and females by taking a look at their beaks. If you’re lucky you might hear the male birds’ mating calls and be able to catch them dancing with their feathers open as a signal to females that they are ready to mate.

Given that the ostrich is the world’s second-fastest runner after the cheetah, you wouldn’t want one chasing after you. So, pay close attention to the safety rules. Stay behind the barriers at all times; remove shiny jewellery that could attract unwanted attention; and don’t touch their heads.

Desaru Ostrich Farm - bird feeding

Having said that, don’t be afraid to interact with a couple of the free-roaming ostriches around the farm. And definitely don’t miss out on the chance to feed them. When you get your tickets at the entrance, you can also purchase grass or corn to feed the birds for RM3 (~S$0.86) each or both for RM5 (~S$1.42).

Their necks are super long and flexible so if you reach out with a stalk, they can just swoop down and grab the food from your hands. Don’t worry, we were told that their beaks are not dangerous; it’s their hooves that you need to be wary of. In fact, when they make the pecking motion, it’s their way of trying to be friendly.

Desaru Ostrich Farm - kids feeding and riding an ostrichEven kids can easily get the hang of feeding the birds.Image adapted from: @mandyalextrixie, @tang.sisters.a via Instagram

Young ones who are brave enough to ride an ostrich can do so for RM30/child (~S$8.60) which will also get them a certificate to say they’ve managed to ride the world’s fastest bird on land. These rides are only for kids under 20kg.

Learn more about ostrich eggs

Desaru Ostrich Farm - standing on an eggDon’t stand on the egg if you’re wearing heels or shoes with spikes, though.

Here’s another fun fact: of all the eggs in the world, ostriches lay the largest. These can weigh anything between 1kg and 1.5kg. Most surprising of all, they can withstand up to 100kg of weight. And you get to test this by standing on a real egg that’s on display in the middle of the farm.

Desaru Ostrich Farm - checking the egg

Once an egg is laid, it will be placed in the incubator for roughly 42 days. Then, one by one, each egg is scanned under a light to see if a baby chick is growing inside or not. 

Those without the black dots, which indicate there are no chicks on the way, will be sent to the kitchen’s refrigerator instead.

Desaru Ostrich Farm - egg opening live demo

The contents of 1 ostrich egg are equivalent to 30 chicken eggs.

Now, you can’t just crack open an ostrich egg with your bare hands. The eggshell is so hard that it requires a power drill to get through. While you’re at the farm, you may be able to catch a live demo by one of the staff, who will first use a hammer and nail to create an opening before drilling a hole to get the contents out.

Desaru Ostrich Farm - products made from ostrich oilMassage oils made from ostrich eggs have traditionally been used for reducing swelling, pain from arthritis, stretch marks, eczema, and treating insect bites.

Extracts from ostrich eggs have been known to have hydrating properties and are thus used to make various skincare products such as moisturisers and massage oils. Even the shells can last hundreds of years if handled carefully, so they are made into various home decor products such as lamps.

Desaru Ostrich Farm - gift shop

You can find all these items plus other souvenirs for sale at the gift shop for RM8-RM30 (~S$2.29-S$8.58).

Share a plate of ostrich egg omelette, enough for the entire family

Desaru Ostrich Farm - ostrich egg omelette

In case it wasn’t already evident enough how large an ostrich egg is, let us tell you that 1 egg makes 6 giant omelettes – each the size of a large prata. You can get a plain omelette for RM18 (~S$5.16) or one with cheese for RM25 (~S$7.09).

Desaru Ostrich Farm - menu

Those who are ticking off a list of “adventurous foods you need to try before you die”, can also try ostrich meat for RM36 (~S$10.32). You’ve got the choice of satay, rendang chunks, or teppanyaki.

You’ll be having meat from the bird’s legs and thighs, as those are the only edible portions. And although this may sound weird, the meat is actually considered healthier than chicken, lamb, pork, and beef because it is lower in calories, fat, and cholesterol. It also has a high protein quotient and iron content.

Plan a family weekend getaway to Desaru Ostrich Farm

Desaru Ostrich Farm - entrance

Photos of the farm on IG may have got you thinking that the only activity here is to feed the birds. Well, now you know that there’s a lot more to Desaru Ostrich Farm, especially if you’re keen to learn more about these creatures. And the best part is that you don’t have to go all the way to South Africa to see them as they’re less than 2 hours away.

How to get to Desaru Ostrich Farm?

There are a couple of transport modes from Singapore to Desaru including driving, taking a bus, and hopping on a 90-minute ferry to Desaru Coast. From the ferry terminal, you’ll need to take a Grab to the farm which is about a 30-minute drive away.

If you are driving directly, the farm is a 1.5-hour drive away from the JB checkpoint.

How much is the admission fee to Desaru Ostrich Farm?

The entrance fee is RM20/adult (~S$5.75) and RM15/child (~S$4.30). Kids below the age of 2 can enter for free.

Can you eat ostrich eggs and are they healthy?

Yes, ostrich eggs are edible. They are sometimes referred to as the world’s healthiest eggs because they consist of 70% egg white and only 30% egg yolk.Desaru Ostrich FarmADMISSION FEERM20/adult (~S$5.75) | RM15/child (~S$4.30) ADDRESSJln Teluk Ramunia, Kampung Changi, 81600 Pengerang, Johor, Malaysia Opening Hours:Thursday 10:00-18:00 Show More Timings Hide

Monday 10:00 AM-06:00 PM
Tuesday 10:00 AM-06:00 PM
Wednesday 10:00 AM-06:00 PM
Thursday 10:00 AM-06:00 PM
Friday 10:00 AM-06:00 PM
Saturday 10:00 AM-06:00 PM
Sunday Closed


Other Desaru guides:Beach resorts in DesaruHard Rock Hotel Desaru CoastGuide to Desaru Coast Adventure Waterpark

Cover image adapted from: @desaruostrichfarm via InstagramPhotography by Doreen Fan.Avatar

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