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Victoria crowned pigeon

Goura victoria

Foto: Victoria crowned pigeon
Váhy a míry
Délka od 58 do 73 cm
Biologická data
Délka života 50 r
Počet mláďat 1
Stav ohrožení
Popis zvířete
The Victoria crowned pigeon, scientifically known as Goura victoria, is a captivating bird native to the New Guinea region. This species is the largest among the pigeon family, with its size and appearance making it a standout in the avian world. The bird can reach lengths of up to 30 inches (75 cm) and weighs approximately 2.5 to 3.5 kg, making it comparable in size to a medium-sized turkey.

One of the most striking features of the Victoria crowned pigeon is its magnificent crest of feathers. The crest is an exquisite fan of lacy, blue-grey feathers that are tipped with white, resembling a delicate lacework crown, which is the origin of its name. This feature is not only a display of beauty but also serves as a communication tool among the species.

The plumage of the Victoria crowned pigeon is primarily a rich, deep blue-grey color. The chest is adorned with a striking splash of red, and the eyes are surrounded by a stark, contrasting mask of black. Its elegant long tail feathers and strong, red legs add to its distinguished appearance. The combination of these physical attributes makes the Victoria crowned pigeon a truly breathtaking sight.

Victoria crowned pigeons are ground-dwelling birds, preferring the dense forest floors of lowland rainforests and swamp areas. Their diet mainly consists of seeds, fruits, and small invertebrates, which they forage for among the leaf litter. Despite their large size and seemingly cumbersome appearance, these birds are quite adept at flying, taking to the air with a loud clapping sound when startled or threatened.

In terms of behavior, the Victoria crowned pigeon is known for its monogamous nature, often forming long-lasting pairs. The courtship display is a unique and elaborate process, involving bowing, bill-fencing, and the male showing off his magnificent crest to attract a mate. The female lays a single white egg, which both parents then incubate and care for. The chick is born relatively well-developed compared to other pigeon species and is cared for by both parents until it is ready to fledge.

Unfortunately, the Victoria crowned pigeon faces threats from habitat loss due to deforestation and is also hunted for its meat and feathers. This has led to a decline in its population, and the species is currently listed as Near Threatened by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). Conservation efforts are underway to protect this unique bird, including habitat protection and legal protection from hunting.

In conclusion, the Victoria crowned pigeon is a remarkable and beautiful bird, boasting an array of unique features and behaviors. Its presence adds a touch of majesty to the forests of New Guinea, making it a symbol of the rich biodiversity of the region. The conservation of this species is crucial, not only for its survival but also for the health of the ecosystem it inhabits.
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