We bought two breeding pairs of emus in spring 2008. Our intentions were to harvest new chicks, after they grow, for meat and oil. Emus are really hardy — even though they originated in Australia, they deal with our New Hampshire winters with no problem.
We got them when they were 1-2 weeks old, and we raised them well into adulthood. We fed them mostly grain, and they also got other sorts of food (veggies, meat). We provided a shelter for them, where we also stored their food.
They were supposed to start laying eggs a year later, and the following year the eggs would be fertilized. However, our emus never laid eggs! It’s hard to sex emus, and we apparently did not guess right, despite the farmer’s help.
We finally harvested the emus spring 2012 for meat and oil. We now sell the oil, which is a natural anti-inflammatory that is amazing with minor arthritic pain and burns. Treat yourself and buy some. You’ll be glad you did.