Peacocks are members of the pheasant family and has fired the imagination of people from all over the world with few able to account for its origin. The peacock is a grand specimen of Indian culture, adopted by the followers of major religions of Asia and Europe. Though native to India the peacock is able to live in many parts of the world in captivity. The peacock had reached Athens by 450 B.C. and kept on the island of Sarnos before this.
There are numerous kinds and colors of peacocks besides the stunningly beautiful white peacock with many people believing these white peacocks to be albinos, but this could not be further than the truth, they are just extremely rare. The white peacock is approximately the same in size, temperament and behavior as the Indian Blue and although the peacock is naturally a wild bird, many have been domesticated with the raising of these stunningly beautiful creatures, both time consuming and worthwhile.
Owning a Peafowl has become very popular, but many people who purchase these birds as pets live in the city, or in areas that have now been built up and are no longer suitable for the life of these easily distressed creatures, leading to calls for help from owners who can no longer provide a suitable life for their charge hence the Peacock Rescue and Adoption Society. These regal looking birds need peace and harmony and can be found roaming freely in zoos and the grounds of stately homes across the world so if choosing to own a peacock or hen, you must be sure of giving them as much space as possible.
Wild peacocks generally have a harem of 2-5 females though in captivity they are quite happy with just the one. The male is identified by his long ‘train’. It is more commonly called a tail, but is not actually a tail. It is merely a cover for the actual tail which is brown in color with the train growing from the centre of its’ back and can grow up to 60 inches in length. The peacock grows to 7 ft from the tip of the beak to the end of the train, with a wing span of up to six feet.
Peacocks thrive on companionship so will be a very unhappy bird if on its own. If the peahen dies, the peacock has been known to fly away in search of her. The purpose of the males’ long and fancy train is to attract the female to mate. He will spread his train displaying a beautiful fan of colors vibrating it rapidly and while shaking his wings, will turn left and right in a kind of mating dance in an attempt to impress. The incubation period of an egg is up to 28 days after which the chick will hatch complete with feathers so it is able to fly into the trees at night.
Peacocks can be raised just about anywhere as long as they are kept warm and dry and they will eat almost anything in their sight. Many people believe that to see a white peacock they will have eternal happiness. The blue peacock is India’s national symbol, where as Burma national symbol is the grey peacock. Peacocks get most of their colors from the reflection of light with the feathers having barbs which in turn have rods and it is these rods that control the reflection of light. White peacocks have a different arrangement of these rods which do not develop the usual colors.