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Birds-of-paradise have fascinated naturalists and photographers for their striking appearance, songs, and elaborate courtship displays. Most of them are to be found in the forests of New Guinea and other nearby islands. The bird-of-paradise in question is the one named magnificent. Like most members of the Paradisaeidae family, the male is the show stopper among the two sexes. Brown, yellow, and blue are just a few of the colors found on the head, neck, wings, and mantle of the male.
Apart from the colorful appearance, it is the complex mating ritual that the male puts up to lure the female is another magnificent part of this bird's charm. Even though in history, the bird was sought after for its beautiful feathers, it is not a threatened species and is quite widespread. Hence, it is listed as a species of Least Concern by the International Union For Conservation Of Nature or IUCN. Even then, the population of this bird is threatened by human encroachment.
Continue reading to find details on the physical description, complex courtship display, and diet of this bird-of-paradise. You can also learn about the behavior of other forest animals like umbrellabirds and cockatoos.
The magnificent bird-of-paradise (Cicinnurus magnificus) is one of the 45 bird species present in the Paradisaeidae family, which also includes the red bird-of-paradise.
Magnificent bird-of-paradise (Cicinnurus magnificus), as the name suggests, belongs to the class of Aves, like the hummingbird.
The total number of magnificent birds-of-paradise in the world is not known. However, according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), the population of magnificent bird-of-paradise birds is currently declining.
The magnificent bird-of-paradise range map is limited to hilly regions of New Guinea and other surrounding islands. Their widespread distribution includes North-Western and Central parts of New Guinea, Yapen Island, West Papuan Island, and so on.
The magnificent bird-of-paradise habitat is tropical mountain forests. This bird lives exclusively in the upper canopy of the forest, especially in the hilly and mountain forests. The range elevation of this bird is between 5900-16400 ft (1800-5000 m). Hence, it is not uncommon to spot the species in deserted open areas of small towns and villages. The birds are non-territorial and non-migratory.
The magnificent bird-of-paradise (Cicinnurus magnificus) is a social bird so can be spotted around other bird-of-paradise species, sunbirds, and other frugivores. Even though they are social, the birds tend to live alone.
The magnificent bird-of-paradise (Cicinnurus magnificus) has a life span of five to eight years, just like the other species. The generation length of this species is around eight years.
During the breeding season, the male will do his utmost to attract and win over the attention of the female. The courtship would involve him singing for the female and fluffing his iridescent green breast shield, yellow mantle, and moving his sickle-like tail. Once the female is impressed, the actual mating period is quite brief. Post mating, the male and female go their separate ways. This Paradisaeidae member is polygamous so the male will mate with multiple females and vice versa.
The breeding season for the various species of birds-of-paradise varies. The breeding season for the magnificent birds-of-paradise runs from July to December. They breed only once a year. Only the female builds the nest and rears the chicks. Generally, the clutch size ranges between one to three eggs. It takes about 14-26 days for the eggs to hatch. The chicks will leave the care of their mother after about 39 days since hatching. It is noted that some males will continue to stay for 30 more days.
For the magnificent birds-of-paradise to reproduce, the females need to be at least one year of age. The males will need to wait for three to six years. This is because the males have to wait for the full growth of their two long tails before mating.
The conservation status of this bird-of-paradise is listed as Least Concern by the International Union For Conservation Of Nature or IUCN. Unlike some species of birds-of-paradise, the population of this species is widespread, in New Guinea and surrounding islands.
Most of the birds of paradise are known for their sexual dimorphism, similar to the frigate bird. The male has a colorful plumage with two long central tail feathers that resemble a sickle. The sickle-shaped tail feathers add to the length of the male. The two long wires or tail feathers play a critical role in the courtship displays. The color on the male is an iridescent green breast shield mixed with brown, the wings are a vibrant orange, blue legs, and a yellow mantle on the neck. Compared to the male, the female birds have drab plumes that are brown in color and have a light blue stripe on the eyes.
As a member of the Paradisaeidae family, this bird, particularly the males, has superb plumage, combining the shades of yellow, orange, blue, and so on. Photos can never do justice to their vibrant appearance. While the birds are lovely, they cannot be described as cute.
The Cicinnurus magnificus or Diphyllodes magnificus has a range of calls and vocalizations that it uses to communicate daily. The Paradisaeidae family is most known for its elaborate songs during courtship. Apart from singing, the males try to impress the female by dancing around her and fluffing its plumage. The male will make sounds like 'joo' or 'jip'.
The Diphyllodes magnificus is a medium-sized bird-of-paradise. Their length varies between 6.3- 10.2 in (16-26 cm). Wilson's bird-of-paradise, the magnificent bird-of-paradise cousin, is smaller in comparison. Even the king bird-of-paradise is smaller than the magnificent bird-of-paradise.
The speed at which the superb Diphyllodes magnificus flies has yet to be determined. In general, birds-of-paradise have been observed as excellent fliers.
This bird weighs between 0.2-0.4 lb (128 -190 g). The males have an average weight of 0.4 lb. The female is smaller than the male.
Males and females do not have separate names and are known as male and female magnificent birds-of-paradise.
The baby magnificent bird-of-paradise is called a chick.
The majority of this species diet is made up of fruits, making them frugivore. About 10-20% of their diet also includes insects like beetles, spiders, crickets, and so on.
No, this bird species is not poisonous.
No, this species of bird-of-paradise will not make a good pet.
The plumes of this bird are used as currency by some indigenous tribes.
Back in history, the bird's tail feathers were used as ornamentation for women's hats.
The vibrancy of the male's tail feathers reflects the bird's readiness to mate.
Diphyllodes magnificus males have an elaborate courtship display. The males pick a display area, which they clean by removing the forest floor litter. Then the actual performance begins. The extremely complex courting ritual involves the male will sing while dancing around his mate. He fluffs his superb plumage, especially the iridescent-green breast shield and yellow mantle when doing his performance. The male will show the female a series of postures and movements, which moves the entire body like tail feathers, head, neck, and wings.
The birds-of-paradise are called so because of the male's stunning plumage and extremely complex mating displays. These characteristics make this group of birds unique and special.
Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! For more relatable content, check out these Amazon parrot facts and toco toucan facts for kids.
You can even occupy yourself at home by coloring in one of our free printable bird coloring pages.
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