Florida TikTok farmer’s cellphone-hating emu goes viral

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“I’m starting to think fame has gone to Emmanuel’s head,” the Florida farmer joked.

Screenshot of @Knucklebumpfarm’s TikTok

Many of Taylor Blake’s TikTok videos begin the same way: She’s on her farm in South Florida, mid-sentence when a menacing black beak protrudes from the side of the screen.

“Emmanuel, don’t do this. Don’t do it, Emmanuel,” Blake warns in his TikToks.

But many of his videos also end the same way: pecked on the ground by Emmanuel, his pet emu with an apparent vendetta against cellphones.

Blake and his emu are now going viral on his TikTok account @Knucklebumpfarms, with millions of viewers bursting into laughter as Emmanuel goes out of his way to interrupt Blake’s recordings.

The first time Blake caught Emmanuel interfering with her video, she posted it online as a joke, she told The Washington Post, adding that fame “completely turned from there. “.

“I’m starting to think fame has gone to Emmanuel’s head,” Blake joked in one of his TikToks where Emmanuel pecks at the phone in the middle of the video.

She also posts cute videos of the duo cuddling in the field on a sunny day. “Emmanuel doesn’t always choose violence,” she said on Instagram. “Sometimes he chooses hugs.”

Blake told The Washington Post that part of his motivation for posting videos of his animal menagerie — which includes emus, cows, donkeys and others — is to give people a reason to smile.

“The world is dark and animals bring joy to everyone,” she told The Washington Post.

It’s no secret that she achieves her goal as her videos reach millions of likes and receive hundreds of kind comments.

“I love coming up here and seeing the laughs and smiles you bring with your creature friends,” one commenter said. “Thank you for sharing with us.”

This story was originally published July 19, 2022 7:20 p.m.

Alison Cutler is a national real-time reporter for the Southeast at McClatchy. She graduated from the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University and previously worked for The News Leader in Staunton, VA, an affiliate of USAToday.

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