Many of the beautiful animals in the world have found their way onto the endangered species list. While there are several reasons an animal may become endangered, the idea of a creature becoming extinct is heartbreaking, to say the least.
For people who love peacocks, the question of whether peacocks are endangered sits heavily on the mind. It’s an important question for all of us, as losing creatures to extinction is not something the world should simply ignore. When it comes to peacocks or peafowl, the answer to the question is complex. Yes, one species of peafowl is considered endangered. To better understand the peacock’s struggle for survival in the wild and to help these beautiful birds avoid extinction, read on below.
What Is an Endangered Species?
An endangered species is an animal or plant whose future in the wild is in danger. For most of the animals on this list, future extinction is likely. Of course, no one knows the time frame for that happening, which is why this list exists. It is used to give governments and the people of the world an indication of what could happen if things don’t change.
For most creatures on the endangered species list, reasons for their struggles can be noted. For instance, loss of habitat, invasive species, and poaching is often at the top of the list. When an animal’s world changes abruptly it is difficult for them to sustain the numbers needed for the species to survive. Unfortunately, over the years, we’ve lost several animal species to extinction and stand to lose more as time marches on.
Which Type of Peacock Is Endangered?
A peacock is the male version of the peafowl. While most people simply call this animal a peacock, due to the males being the primary target of the world’s affection, peahens are just as important. There are three types of peafowl in the world, the Indian, Congo, and Green Peacock or Peafowl. While each of these types of peafowl is known for its beautiful feathers and loudness, only one has made its way onto the endangered species list.
The Green Peafowl was placed on the endangered species list in 2008. It is believed that the hunting of this peacock for its meat and feathers is the main reason for its decline in numbers. Coupled with changes in their habitat and the continued collection of their eggs and chicks has kept this peafowl species on the list since that time.
A Look at the Numbers
When the Green Peafowl was placed on the IUCN Red List of Endangered Species, their numbers had been decimated. At the time of the addition, it was estimated that only 5,000 to 10,000 Green Peafowl were left in the wild. Luckily, those numbers have changed over the years. It is now thought that there would be 10,000 to 20,000 Green Peafowl currently in the wild. While this is an improvement, it still isn’t enough to take them off the endangered species list. With the continued hunting, this species will most likely remain there.
The Vulnerability of Other Peacock Species
While the special focus should be paid to the plight of the Green Peafowl, we can’t forget the Indian and Congo species. The Congo Peafowl has found itself placed on the list of endangered animals as vulnerable. This means their numbers are also on the decline and they could become endangered in the future if something isn’t done.
The Indian Blue Peafowl is considered the most stable of the three. Due to this classification, a complete assessment of their numbers in the wild has not been done. Thanks to breeding efforts, this species of peafowl seems to be thriving and shows no cause for concern just yet.
Conservation Efforts for Green Peafowl
To help the plight of the Green Peafowl conservation efforts have been underway. In an effort to help these beautiful creatures, habitats are being protected and crackdowns on poaching are underway. Unfortunately, in their homeland of Asia, the peacock is considered a nuisance to crops. Farmers are constantly poisoning them or finding other ways of keeping them off their lands.
Special breeding plans are underway for these birds, however. These breeding plans take place in captive environments but are used to help build numbers while ensuring the young peafowl aren’t poached or killed by predators.
While the peacock is a pristine bird with beautiful feathers, this is no reason to hunt them. Pushing them to further extinction due to our need to display pretty feathers or be entertained by beautiful birds is helping remove these amazing creatures from the natural world. To help peacocks, support their conservation efforts and do your part to keep these creatures part of our world. There’s room for all of us.
Featured Image Credit: Piqsels