Where Do Peacocks Live? Where Are You Most Likely To See Them? | Kidadl


Where Do Peacocks Live? Where Are You Most Likely To See Them?

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We've all heard of peacocks because of their dazzling, metallic-blue plumage and vibrant green, blue, and gold tail feathers.

Peafowl is the term used for both sexes, while the male is called a peacock, and the female is called a peahen. Both of them can be distinguished from one another based on their sexual dimorphism. Peacocks are an exotic bird species famously seen in zoos and parks and also kept as pets all over the world.

Flocks of peacocks are called 'parties,' and why wouldn't they be? They're so shimmery and elegant. They seem like a party all in one! Peafowls are natively found in Asia, Australia, and the Caribbean, as well as in Africa and other continents too! In some regions, peacocks are reproduced through selective breeding processes to create peafowl with interesting color combinations. These birds are also quite temperamental and often display aggressive behavior, which is why they are kept away from other bird species.

If you enjoy reading about peacocks, check out these fun facts articles about groups of peacocks and where praying mantises live.

Peacock Habitat

Of course, the ideal habitat for peacocks may vary from species to species, but generally speaking, peafowls prefer living in regions with dense forests, where they can roost in trees and live in flocks called parties. Apart from the commonly known green peafowl (found in Java Island in Indonesia and Myanmar), there is the Congo peafowl (which lives in the African jungles), and the blue peafowl (which is endemic to Sri Lanka and India). Other species of peacocks are found in several parts of the world including Nepal, Pakistan, Australia, the United States (especially Florida), and the Bahamas, as well as in some European countries.

Wild peafowls prefer living in warm climates which are surrounded by shady trees and have accessible hiding spots. Peacocks and peahens roost together and often choose areas that are well-irrigated by rivers and streams to prevent dehydration in hot weather. Peafowls are popularly found close to fruit crops because their diet mainly consists of seeds, flowers, figs, berries, insects, and fruit. During the mating season, females use this vegetation source to forage and feed their young. Apart from their jungle habitat, peafowls are also traded as exotic pets because of their beautiful plumage, which means they live in captivity as well.

Peafowls would be endangered in captivity due to predators, unknown forests, climatic conditions, or invasive species, which is why enclosures are carefully designed with lots of greenery and hiding spots to make them feel comfortable. Similarly, some enclosures are installed with wooden dowels to imitate plants for the peafowls to roost on. To ensure that the temperature is appropriate for peahens and peacocks, enclosures in colder regions install heat sources, such as electric heaters. To protect peafowls from predators, enclosures have a secure top and underground fencing installed, and in the presence of flying predators, some enclosures may also opt for an electric fence.

Different Types Of Peacocks

To begin with, let's clarify what the difference is between a peafowl, a peacock, and a peahen. Peafowl is the term used to collectively describe males as well as females, whereas peacock specifically refers to the male, and the females are called peahens. Therefore, it is not correct to say female or male peacocks; it would simply be peahens and peacocks.

Now to answer the question about the different types. The most common wild peafowls are blue peacocks, which are found in India and Sri Lanka; green peacocks, from Java Island and Myanmar; and Congo peacocks, which are native to Africa. Although these three species share almost the same blue and green color scheme, their features hold stark differences.

Let's examine the differences in the appearances of these wild peacocks. Although the green and blue peafowls are quite similar in that they have fan-like crests on their heads and long, brightly colored tail feathers, the major difference lies in the feathers around their heads, necks, and underparts. The crest is painted a deep but bright blue shade among blue peacocks, whereas the green ones display a metallic green. Peahens of all species do not have a fabulous display of colors or feathers and are duller than males. The green peafowl also holds another major difference: its sheer size. It is the largest peafowl in the world.

However, it's unfortunate that these green birds are listed as an endangered species by IUCN due to habitat loss and poaching. In contrast, the Congo peacock is not brightly colored and does not possess a fan of tail feathers to attract females during the mating season. These pheasant-like birds have a bluish-black upper body with an olive-green shimmer on their wings and tails. Apart from these, there is the rare white peafowl, the Spalding peafowl, and the black-shouldered peafowl.

Peacock with spread wings.

The Origin Of The Wild Peafowl

Although we have a basic idea from where the different types of wild peafowls originate, let's find out about the exact origin of these birds. Firstly, both of the lavishly colored species, blue and green, belong to the same genus. Similarly, both of these are also natives of South Asia, with distribution across different countries. On the contrary, the Congo peafowl does not only belong to a different genus but is endemic to a different continent.

Let's start with the blue ones! These wild birds originate from Ceylon in Sri Lanka and India, which is why they are highly cherished and have been named the national bird of the Indian subcontinent. The green peacock hails from eastern regions, although some populations may also be found in India. Primarily, they live in the more tropical regions of China, Thailand, Myanmar, Cambodia, Vietnam, Malaysia, and the Java Island of Indonesia. Lastly, the Congo peafowl, as the name suggests, is found specifically in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Why are there no wild peacock populations outside of their native lands?

Even though aviaries, zoos, or exotic pet enthusiasts all over the world have domesticated different species of peafowls, it is quite uncommon to find wild populations of these birds apart from in their native regions. One of the important reasons is that they are not usually allowed outside of their territory because of their aggressive nature towards other birds and because they would become an invasive species. However, they are allowed to roam free in their native territory, even in the presence of humans, because they are quite docile around the public.

Similarly, peafowls are not designed to adjust well in the wild, apart from in their native lands. They are also highly susceptible to predators because of their brightly-colored plumage, making them easy targets. In unknown regions, peafowls contract avian flu as well as other diseases and may not be able to acclimatize themselves. Sometimes, peafowls are seen in the wild in different habitats. They are usually feral, which would mean they were raised by humans and later became wild.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly facts for everyone to enjoy! If you liked reading about where peacocks live, then why not take a look at our articles on why peacocks spread their feathers or Peacock Facts.

The Kidadl Team is made up of people from different walks of life, from different families and backgrounds, each with unique experiences and nuggets of wisdom to share with you. From lino cutting to surfing to children’s mental health, their hobbies and interests range far and wide. They are passionate about turning your everyday moments into memories and bringing you inspiring ideas to have fun with your family.

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