- Scientific Name:
- Pavo cristatus
- Park Location:
- India, Sri Lanka, Myanmar, Indochina, and Java Congo Basin
- Rainforests and dry-deciduous forests
- Indian Peacocks are the national bird of India.
- The males are brighter in colour and posses the long beautiful feathers. The females are generally brown in colour for better camouflage.
Our peafowl are free roaming so they are very easy to spot whilst walking around the zoo. They are very friendly which is why we are able to allow them to wander around the park and not keep them within an enclosure. Peafowl are very vocal animals, particularly in breeding season. They display a selection or various calls to each other ranging from honks to meow-like calls.
There are three species of peafowl still living today, the Indian, Congo and Green, The peafowl here at Flamingo Land are Indian. The male Indian peacock displays a bright blue head and chest, with an array of colours on his long impressive tail feathers. These feathers can make up to two-thirds of the birds’ body length. The purpose of the tail feathers is for the male to fan them out to help him attract a female mate, the peahens. The more impressive the feathers look, the higher the probability of him finding a mate. However there is a trade-off to how long and heavy he should make his feathers as this would restrict his mobility and ability to fly and escape from predators. Thus it really is an example of ‘the survival of the fittest’. Females are not as brightly coloured as the males, they are a grey-brownish colour, and are better at camouflaging away from predators, particularly when sitting on eggs in a nest. You may also see some pure white peahens, which are naturally occurring albino mutations. In the wild these bright birds would be extremely vulnerable to predators so are seen much less often.
The peacocks tend to stick to a particular territory, with several peahens surrounding him. After mating, some of the females will choose instead to nest in or under trees. They will incubate fertilised eggs for 28-30 days, after which around 4-6 young will hatch out. These will then follow mum, feeding from her bill before eventually learning what they are able to eat; usually insects and small grubs.
As it is the national bird of India, it is highly protected in many areas in the wild. It would face a small amount of threats in the wild such as for meat and feathers, but its population numbers are fairly abundant. Conservative estimates of the population put them at more than 100,000.