Peacock wooing a peahen

Did you know that the beautiful peacocks you see are male birds?  The term peacock refers only to the colorful male. The females, called peahens, are less colorful and have no large fan of feathers. The babies are called peachicks. The entire family is called peafowl. 

Peacocks and peahens have a crown of feathers on their head called a crest. Peacocks have long green feathers that grow out of its back called a train There are up to 175 feathers in the train. It can grow up to 5 feet in length. The round spot on the end of a train feather is called an eyespot. 

Peacocks are beautiful birds that are part of the pheasant family. Blue peafowl are the most popular species and live in India and Sri Lanka. Other species include the green jungle found in Indonesia, Malaysia, and Myanmar, which have a golden-green neck and breast and the Congo peafowl that lives in Africa and lacks an ornate train.  

Peacocks and peahens are loud, especially late at night or early in the morning. Their noises are calls to communicate with each other. 

A peacock up close, with a blue head and neck, green feathers.
Peacock sticking its head straight up in the air.
Did You Know?
  • The peafowl is the national bird of India. Hindus consider the bird sacred. 
  • Peahens can fly better than peacocks due to their lack of a train. 
  • A peacock is about the size of a turkey.  
  • A peachick has a special tooth called an eggtooth that helps the peachick break its shell to hatch.