Peacock

(Pavo cristatus)

Habitat and Distribution: Found in deciduous open forests in Sri Lanka, India and Pakistan.     

Size: 3-7 feet long; 6-14 pounds; wingspan up to 5.3 feet

Wild Diet: Insects, worms, grains, reptiles, small reptiles, small mammals, berries, flower buds, grass, and bamboo shoots

Predators: Civets, tigers, leopards, wild dogs, and jackals

Lifespan: 20-25 years in the wild; 30 years in zoos

Reproduction: Peacocks are ready to mate at 2-3 years of age. Females select mates with the most impressive tail feathers and fight away other females. Nests are built under shrubs and made of dry sticks and leaves. Females produce 3-6 eggs and incubate them for about a month. Chicks are born fully feathered and can fly within a week. They stay with their mother for 7-10 weeks learning how to drink and forage.

Behavior: Peacocks feed on the ground but roost in trees. They spend a lot of time preening their feathers. They communicate with a variety of loud, shrieking calls. Male peacocks use their brilliant blue and green tail feathers, spotted with ocelli (eyespots), to attract mates.

Conservation

IUCN Status: Least Concern

Peacocks are vulnerable to predation, disease, pesticide poisoning, and habitat loss. Humans sometimes hunt them for sport and eat their meat and eggs. However, peacocks also have a wide range and their populations are stable.

Did you know?

  • Females are called peahens.
  • A group of peacocks is called a party!