Common peafowl
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Legend of the common peafowl

According to a legend which finds mention in the Uttara Ramayana, Indra, the king of the Devas was at war with Ravana, the demon king. On being unable to defeat Ravana, Indra took shelter under the wing of a peacock, also known as Mayura. And later he blessed it with a thousand eyes and fearlessness from serpents. Which of course will explain the ‘eyes’ on the feathers and its ability to feast on snakes. In fact, countless such myths and legends can be attributed to this magnificent bird, which oddly enough is called common. 

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Common peafowl | Binomial name: Pavo cristatus

Also known as the Indian peafowl, the common peafowl is a species native to the Indian subcontinent. Recognised as the national bird of India, it lives mostly on the ground in open forest or on land under cultivation. It feeds on berries and grains but also preys on snakes, lizards, and small rodents. Its most common calls are a loud pia-ow or may-awe. In forests, the calls often indicate the presence of a predator. It’s magnificence, though, can stop just about anyone in their tracks.

Conservation Status: Least Concern (IUCN 3.1)

Kingdom: Animalia | Class: Aves | Order: Galliformes | Family: Phasianidae

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Rahul Jauhari

Rahul Jauhari

A well-known name in the advertising and marketing industry, Rahul is also the founder of Live Equal Foundation, a nonprofit force dedicated to removing inequity from the world. He is an avid birder, wildlife warrior and feels at home in the forest.

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