Sunday, 7 October 2012

Peacocks and peafowl

Peacocks and Peafowl

A Male blue Peacock displaying his plumage

The Peacock is native to Southeast Asia and the Indian Subcontinent.

There are 3 species of Peacock the Green which is endangered the Blue and the Congo. The white peacock is a hybrid and does not occur naturally.

The male (peacock) Indian Peafowl has iridescent blue-green or green colored plumage. The peacock tail ("train") is not the tail quill feathers but the highly elongated upper tail covert feathers. The "eyes" are best seen when the peacock fans its tail. Like a cupped hand behind the ear, the erect tail-fan of the male helps direct sound to the ears. Both species have a crest atop the head. The female (peahen) Indian Peafowl has a mixture of dull green, brown, and grey in her plumage. She lacks the long upper tail coverts of the male but has a crest. The female can also display her plumage to ward off female competition or signal danger to her young.

The blue peacock

The green peacock photo from Wikipedia

The Congo peacock photo from Wikipedia

The white Peacock photo from wickipedia

The feathers you are all so familiar with come from the Blue Peacock.

Male peacocks produce a new set of eye and sword feathers every year almost all peacock eye feathers are from moulting’s the annual drop of them. But since we do not see how they are kept we cannot truly say they are cruelty free. Peacocks can be kept free roaming they usually do not fly away. Someone will surely prove me wrong on this. There are wild Peacocks here on Gabriola. This brings me to the next point.

Peacocks where introduced into Europe as a curiosity and as FOOD yep. The peasants ate chickens and ducks and geese nobility ate swans peacocks and other exotic birds. Peacocks introduced as captive birds in some countries and released have become a huge problem. In New Zealand the government was laying poison for them due to the huge numbers. Introduced species like this are detrimental too native plants and wild life. Think Dutch elm disease.

Some people went to the Government and said if you stop poising the peacocks we will hunt them. Resulting in an environmentally friendly solution. The birds are killed and eaten and the feathers and pelts harvested and sold.

As a foot note I would like to add that there is a peacock Pheasant witch is endangered I have seen these feathers for sale coming from Avery birds.
Peacock Pheasant wickepedia

Thank you for reading

Here is a use for peacock feathers I grew up with
Gombey Dancers Bermuda