Emus live in various habitats across Australia both inland and near the coast.
The diet depends on seasonal availability with such plants as Acacia, Casuarina and grasses being favoured. They also eat insects and other arthropods, including grasshoppers and crickets, beetles, cockroaches, ladybirds, bogong and cotton-boll moth larvae, ants, spiders and millipedes.

Emus are diurnal birds and spend their day foraging, preening their plumage with their beak, dust bathing and resting. They are generally gregarious birds apart from the breeding season, and while some forage, others remain vigilant to their mutual benefit. They are able to swim when necessary, although they rarely do so unless the area is flooded or they need to cross a river. Emus bathing on a very hot summer day in a shallow pond

Emus begin to settle down at sunset and sleep during the night. They do not sleep continuously but rouse themselves several times during the night. When falling asleep, emus first squat on their tarsi and enter a drowsy state during which they are alert enough to react to stimuli and quickly return to a fully awakened state if disturbed. As they fall into deeper sleep, their neck droops closer to the body and the eyelids begin to close.