Surprisingly large, gullible, but cautious pigeons live in the dense forests of the island of New Guinea. Outwardly, they only vaguely resemble familiar members of the family. Body size crowned pigeon more like a turkey, and the beauty and smoothness - on the peacock. Where did this amazing breed come from, and is it breeding in enclosures? Find out the most interesting information and see photos of crowned pigeons with us.
Crowned breed is represented by three species of similar characteristics: chestnut chest, fan-bearing and blue-headed. The most beautiful tuft have fanned crowned individuals. They can be seen in the photo below. The largest among the crowned ones are blue-crested. Chestnut, judging from the name, differ from relatives in the color of feathers.
Doves with an unusual crown of feathers on their heads can be found only on islands near New Guinea and on its coasts. In its natural habitat, this breed of birds has practically no enemies. Representatives of the crowned breed have a rather large weight with insufficiently large wings, so each flight is accompanied by the noise of the wings and it seems to be given hard. Crowned pigeon does not live alone, only in groups of 2-10 individuals. Birds of this species live on average 15 years, but can reach 20 years of age.
The beautiful tuft was the reason why the pigeon became the desired prey of poachers. Illegal extermination led to the almost complete disappearance of the species of crowned pigeon. In total, there are no more than 10,000 matured representatives of the breed worldwide.
It is not known for certain how such an unusual species of pigeons appeared on the islands. However, studies of genetic material showed that the dodo and the hermit are the ancestors of all three species of crowned pigeons. James Stevens in the work of 1819 was first described crowned pigeon. During the 19th century, crowned women attracted natural scientists from all over the world. The look of chestnut crowned was described in detail in 1867 by the German Otto Finsch.
External data crowned pigeon has a truly royal. A small head with an elongated beak, bent at the end down, is crowned with a luxurious tuft of unusual feathers, placed in a fan. It is noteworthy that, unlike many other birds, pigeons carry this crest only in the straightened position.
The appearance of all representatives of the Crowned Breed is outstanding, noticeable, and memorable. They have a large body, the dimensions of which reach 85 cm in length and 3 kg in mass, tall, thin legs, bright plumage and unchanged tuft.
Special attention deserves the color of birds. The coquettish edges of their wings are particularly interesting. Several medium feathers are longer than the others, and their ends are painted white and edged with black. This pigeon, as befits crowned individuals, is published only in snow-white gloves, the role of which is successfully performed by these unusual feathers. Bright color is not constant even within the same species. So, among the slate-blue fan-shaped and blue-crested, you can also find blue-black.
A fan-shaped one is considered one of the most beautiful pigeons of the whole family. Feathers on his tuft are topped with a sphenoid beard with a black or white edging along the edge. His lower body is usually in brown-red tones, close to saturated, dark. The top is dazzling blue with notes of gray, blue and black.
Blue-Chest and Chestnut Subspecies
The color of the no less beautiful blue-crested subspecies is somewhat different, but in general the scheme is similar. The lower body is predominantly brownish brown, chestnut shades. But the zone of brown, in contrast to the fan-shaped, reaches the shoulders. The neck and head are the same slate-blue, like that of a relative with a chic tuft. The tuft itself in this species is more fluffy and tender, but has no wedge-shaped beards and an abundance of colors in the plumage.
Representatives of the chestnut species are very similar to their relatives, but are distinguished by a poorer tuft and feather color. The breast of this bird is chestnut, and the wings are brown or reddish. Look at such a handsome chestnut brown man in the photo below the article.
In nature, all crowned crowns feed exclusively on the ground, choosing beaked fallen fruits, berries, seeds and fresh leaves. Pigeons love to eat small snails, worms, spiders and other invertebrates. Unlike the rocks that live in our latitudes, crowned heads do not tick leaves and branches on the ground with their beak, collecting only what is above.
Birds live mainly in damp lowland forests or in wetlands and partially flooded areas. In these places enough suitable food. In captivity for birds organize spacious cages in warm rooms. In the zoos of crowned pigeons they feed avocados, special compound feed for tropical birds and floury grunt larvae. When growing in captivity, it is necessary to provide this bird with a varied diet, including various graminoids, larvae and invertebrates.
The period of mating games in these birds is in the middle of autumn. Crowned pigeon becomes sexually mature at the age of 2 years. The token of the male looks very elegant and is accompanied by a sound reminiscent of drumming. Males are not aggressive, but at the sight of a competitor during the dance raise one wing and tail, preparing for battle.
Pigeons of this breed build their nests very high in the trees, not less than 6 meters from the ground. On thick branches at the base of the trunk, they arrange a platform of branches and sticks, on which they build a nest of fern shoots. The female lays 1-2 eggs and remains in the nest only for the night. Happy future dad replaces her.
Chicks 3-10 days fed with a special secretory fluid, and then brought in the beak of "adult" food. The young pigeon makes its first flight at 2 months, but for another month remains under the care of its parents. Reproduction of crowned pigeons and in captivity can be achieved if necessary conditions are created and a nest is built from a large wicker basket. It must be lined with leaves and branches.