Rooster Cogburn Ostrich Ranch – Picacho, Arizona
Sitting on 600 acres between Phoenix and Tucson on Interstate 10 you will see the largest privately owned Ostrich ranch in the U.S.A. The ranch raises its own birds, they do not board for other people but they do share their experience and joy of these magnificent birds with those that want to stop by and see them. The ranch is the home to over 1100 Pure South African Black hens laying.
The Ostrich is the largest living bird in the world; it is native to Africa and are desert animals. The adult males are called roosters (just like chickens) and are 8 to 9 feet tall weighing in at 350 to 400 lbs. The hens are a little smaller but during breeding season they will get to 300 to 350 lbs. They don’t fly but can run at speeds of up to 40 mph! The birds will live to be 50 to 70 years old so you probably don’t want to think about getting one for a pet. Just visit the ranch and get your exposure to these huge birds.
If you are thinking about baking and need lots of eggs for your goodies you may want to consider an Ostrich egg, one egg is equivalent in volume to 2 dozen chicken eggs. The hen can lay 40 – 100 eggs per year (that’s like 960 chicken eggs at the smallest number of 40!) The Ostrich egg tastes very similar to the chicken egg but are fluffier and are great for baking and pastries but if you are planning to have them soft boiled for breakfast know that it will take an hour and if you want hard boiled plan on one and a half hours! The meat from the Ostrich is a red meet that looks and tastes much like beef (seriously) and has a lower fat and cholesterol level than either turkey or chicken.
The old story of the Ostrich burring it’s head in the sand is a fable. The male will dig a deep hole in the sand to build a nest for the eggs and that if probably what has been seen so that people thought they were burying their head in the sand but it isn’t so. It’s for the protection of the eggs that they dig such a big hole (up to 6-8 feet wide and 2-3 feet deep).
You are welcome to visit the ranch and take a 40 minute tour on the Monster Truck. You will visit the ostrich ranch and the desert and learn about the big birds and all the other things that make this ranch unique (even the birds). You will be able to feed the birds, see breeding camps, see chick rearing barns and much more.
Location: 27480 S Marex Drive, Picacho, Arizona 85241 – Located between Phoenix and Tucson take exit #219 on I-10, then follow the sign and take frontage road east 1 mile directly to the ranch.
Hours: Summer: 9 – 5:30 Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Monday. Closed on Tuesday, Wednesday, & Thursday until October when they are only closed on Wednesday from October to Christmas. Winter hours: 9 – 5:30 from Christmas thru May. They are closed on Thanksgiving and Christmas Day.
Feeding area Admission: Kids 6 – 106 $5 each (includes feed and nectar); kids 5 and under are free but they don’t get the feed or nectar and feed or nectar refills are $2 each.