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Indian Peafowl

  • 05 Oct 2021
  • 2 min read

Why in news

Recently, a man was hit by a peafowl in Kerala after which he died. This incident has turned the spotlight on the increasing population of Indian peafowls in the state.

Key Points

  • About:
    • The collective name for peacocks is peafowl. The male of the variety is called a peacock and the female peafowl is called a peahen.
      • The Indian peacock is also the National Bird of India.
    • Peafowl (Pavo cristatus) belongs to the Phasianidae family. They are among the largest of all birds that fly.
      • Phasianidae is the pheasant family, a bird family that includes among its members the jungle fowl (from which the domestic chicken is descended), partridge, peacock, pheasant, and quail.
    • The two most-recognizable species of peafowl are:
      • The blue, or Indian, peacock of India and Sri Lanka.
      • The green or Javanese, peacock (P. muticus) found from Myanmar (Burma) to Java.
  • Habitat:
    • The Indian peafowl is a native of India and some parts of Pakistan and Sri Lanka.
    • The species are currently habituated more in central Kerala, followed by southeast and northwest parts of the state.
      • At least 19% of the states’ area is suitable habitat for this species and this may increase by 40-50% by 2050.
    • They are well adapted to living in forest edges and cultivated areas.
  • Concerns:
    • They are a threat to paddy farmers in Kerala. They destroy its seeds and cause man-animal conflict.
      • Agriculture expansion and deforestation have caused other species to ‘invade human territory’.
    • The growing population of peafowls signals climate change. They are known to grow and thrive in dry conditions.
  • Protection Status:

Source: DTE

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