Violet

No shrinking violet here! This dwarf cassowary was a force to be reckoned with.
  • 1980s
  • 2010s

She may have been a dwarf cassowary, the smallest of the three cassowary species, but there was nothing little about her personality! After living at the Park for 19 years, Violet came to the Zoo to enjoy her golden years. At 3 1/2 feet tall, she was a force to be reckoned with, and not just because of the 3-inch, dagger-like claws on each foot.

Violet liked to follow her keepers about, pecking at their shoelaces. A ZOONOOZ article remarked that, “When her primary keeper is in the exhibit, Violet follows her around, giving completed chores the once-over, seemingly making sure all the work is done to her satisfaction. Her keen housekeeping sense earned her the nickname ‘sidewalk supervisor.’” Though cassowaries are not terribly social birds, Violet proved to be an exception and would welcome her keepers with a little “dance” and vocalization. Violet proved that you don’t have to be big to be bold.

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