Peacock (Indian blue)

Pavo cristatus

IUCN Red List status: Least Concern

For more info on classifications, visit

Least Concern


Where they live

Indian sub-continent from eastern Pakistan through India, south from the Himalayas to Sri Lanka


moist and dry-deciduous forests


bill to tail length 100-115cm, 195-225cm with full train, wingspan 80-160cm


male 4-6 kg, female 2.75-4kg


15 to 20 years


not threatened and protected legally over much of its range

Did you know...

  • The Indian peafowl is the national bird of India and is protected in that country
  • Hindus consider the bird to be sacred because the god Kartikeya rides on its back
  • A group of peafowl is also called an ostentation, or a pride

More about peafowl...

The male Indian peafowl, commonly known as the peacock, is one of the most recognisable birds in the world. These large, brightly coloured members of the pheasant family have a distinctive crest and an unmistakable ornamental train of feathers.

The train is opened up in to a large erect fan and is used by the peacock to display to the drab-coloured peahen.

Peafowl are omnivorous and feed on a diet of seeds, insects, fruits, small mammals and reptiles.

They forage on the ground, moving in small groups, known as musters, that usually have a cock and 3 to 5 hens. At the night Peafowl roost on tall trees but may sometimes make use of rocks, buildings or pylons.

During the breeding season a peahen lays a clutch of 4-8 eggs in a nest concealed in scrub vegetation.

The eggs, which are incubated only by the female, take about 28 days to hatch.

The chicks are precocial and follow the mother around after hatching.

Downy young may sometimes climb on their mothers back and the female may carry them in flight to a safe tree branch.

DZC’s peafowl may be seen living free-range around the grounds.

How you can help...