Bird Families

Genus: Caloenas Maned pigeons

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Chances are you've never heard of anything about Nicobar pigeon (Caloenas nicobarica), which is also known as Maned pigeon... But, nevertheless, representatives of this species are considered the most beautiful pigeons among all known species from the family of pigeons. In addition, it is the closest living relative of the already extinct flightless Dodo birds. A distinctive feature of Nicobar pigeons is their incredibly beautiful rainbow feathers, as well as a long mane of brightly colored feathers. The reason for such a colorful coloring of these amazing birds was their habitat - the coastal areas of the Nicobar Islands, where the species has developed for thousands of years in isolation, and where natural predators are practically absent.

The Maned Pigeon has an incredibly bright color of feathers.

That is why birds did not have to develop an inconspicuous camouflage of natural colors in the process of evolution in order to successfully hide from predators. According to the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), the Nicobar pigeon is endangered as it is in high demand among traders of exotic birds and animals. They have reddish legs, a white tail, and are covered in blue, copper, and green feathers. The female of the Maned Pigeon is slightly smaller than the male and has a white iris, in contrast to the brown iris of the adult male. In addition, the immature male is distinguished by its dark tail and lack of overflow. Nicobar pigeon is also called Hawk dove and White-tailed dove... The length of an adult male is 40-41 centimeters and weighs about 613 grams.

Habitat of Nicobar pigeons

The pigeon Caloenas nicobarica is most common in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, but is also found in India, Myanmar, on small islands southwest of Thailand, on isolated islands around Malaysia, islands off southern Cambodia and Vietnam, islands around Sumatra, Wallace and Papua, in Indonesia, Timor-Leste, the Philippine Islands, islands in Papua New Guinea and throughout the Solomon Islands. And although the habitat is quite large, the number of Nicobar pigeons in 1985 was only 1000 birds.

credit: Jaochainoi credit: John Williams

[irp posts = "15231 ″ name =" Alpine swift can fly for six months without landing "]

credit: Jim4496 credit: Sue Demetriou credit: Kathy Kornak credit: Silvain de Munck credit: Laurie Hernandez

Species: Caloenas nicobarica (Linnaeus, 1758) = Nicobar [maned] pigeon

One of the most beautiful representatives of the pigeon family is the maned, or Nicobar, pigeon. This is the last and only surviving representative of the maned pigeons of the same genus. It is simply impossible not to recognize a maned pigeon among other species of a pigeon. Its long feathers, sparkling with emerald and azure, form around the neck what looks like a necklace or a multicolored robe. But its plumage looks most beautiful under the rays of the bright sun, from which it shimmers with all the colors of the rainbow. But in the shade, the colors become more restrained, giving the bird a more gray, everyday look, masking it well from enemies among the foliage.

The range of maned pigeons is in Southeast Asia. The homeland of the maned pigeon is the small islands east of India, ranging from the Nicobar and Andaman, up to the Solomon and New Guinea islands, including the islands belonging to Malaysia, Cambodia, Thailand, Indonesia and the Philippines. By the name of the Nicobar Islands, these pigeons are called Nicobar.

Maned pigeons live in small flocks or pairs in the jungle, preferring uninhabited islands. A secluded lifestyle on distant islands, where it has practically no natural enemies, has left its mark on the appearance of the maned pigeon. This heavy bird weighing up to six hundred grams, growing almost forty centimeters in length, does not really like to fly. While flocks of maned pigeons can often be seen cruising between the islands in search of food, they spend most of their time on the ground. Nature has endowed these birds with powerful, sturdy legs, giving them experienced walkers. Only the approaching danger can force the maned pigeon to leave its usual land and seek refuge in the branches of trees.

During the day, united in flocks of several dozen individuals, maned pigeons fly from one island to another, not leaving the mainland of Southeast Asia, in search of seeds, berries, fruits, nuts and insects. The special structure of the stomach allows them to digest nuts with a shell so hard that it can only be broken with a hammer. Unlike other species, Nicobar pigeons fly in columns, and white tails help them to navigate in a flock, serving as a kind of beacons for those flying from behind.

With the beginning of the mating season, maned pigeons fly away to one of the remote uninhabited islands covered with dense tropical vegetation. Like most pigeons, they are monogamous and choose one partner for life. However, an old acquaintance does not at all exclude courtship and mating dances, which can last for several days. The basis of the marriage ceremony is all kinds of obeisances, decorated with bright tints of the raised mantle. At the end of the solemn part, the time for mating comes - the male chooses a place suitable for the nest a few meters from the ground and collects brushwood, from which the female builds a comfortable and stable nest.

When the female lays eggs, both parents take turns incubating them, and each gives this lesson about two weeks. The hatched chicks, like those of other pigeons, are weak and defenseless. Therefore, they are under the care of their adult parents for the first three months of their young life.

Genetic scientists at the University of Oxford, having carried out a DNA analysis in 2004, officially confirmed the fact that the maned pigeon is the closest relative of the flightless land bird dodo, extinct in the middle of the 17th century, or, as it is also called, the dodo.

Where dwell

The habitat of maned pigeons is the Nikoar and Andaman Islands, Indonesia, Myanmar, the Philippines and New Guinea. In addition, scientists recently found out that the DNA of these birds is similar to the DNA of the dodo birds, the Liverpool pigeon and the Rodriguez dodo, which have become extinct long ago. You can meet representatives of this species on small islands.

Appearance

From ordinary maned pigeons, they differ in bright colorful plumage, which creates the feeling that a mantle or necklace has been put on the bird. The bird looks most attractive during the day when the sun is shining - at this time its feathers shimmer with red, orange, green and other colors. In the evening, the plumage of the bird takes on a more restrained and gray color.

The bird received such an appearance due to the fact that its habitat is most often uninhabited islands, where representatives of this species have practically no enemies. Therefore, maned pigeons do not need camouflage. Due to the lack of enemies, these birds hardly even fly, although they know how to do it. Males grow up to 20 cm in length, and their body weight often exceeds 500 grams. Females are smaller, but their plumage is dimmer.

Features of lifestyle and nutrition

To search for food, maned pigeons gather in small flocks, and then circle around the islands for several hours. The rest of the time the birds spend on the ground. These pigeons have unusually hardy legs, thanks to which they could easily exist without wings. Maned pigeons usually take off only at the sight of an approaching predator.

It is worth paying attention to the stomach of these birds. The fact is that he is able to digest nuts, which a person would not be able to break without using a hammer.

For flights, these birds gather in columns, in which they orient themselves with the help of their white tails.

Population status

Hunting for maned pigeons is becoming popular. These birds are hunted both for further sale and for consumption.

At the same time, the number of natural habitats is rapidly decreasing. This is due to the fact that now on small islands forests are rapidly being cut down, and industrial enterprises that pollute the environment are being built.

Despite the fact that today this species is considered common, in some places it is almost extinct. The International Union for Conservation of Nature believes that the population of maned pigeons will soon become vulnerable.

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The homeland of maned pigeons - small islands east of India: from Nicobar and Andaman to Solomon and New Guinea islands

They live in small flocks or pairs in the jungle, preferring the uninhabited islands of Malaysia, Cambodia, Thailand, Indonesia and the Philippines.

A secluded lifestyle on distant islands, where it has practically no natural enemies, has left its mark on the appearance of the maned pigeon.

This heavy bird weighing up to six hundred grams, growing almost forty centimeters in length, does not really like to fly.

Although flocks of maned pigeons can often be seen cruising between the islands in search of food, they spend most of their time on the ground.

Nature has endowed these birds with powerful, sturdy legs, giving them experienced walkers. Only the approaching danger can force the maned pigeon to leave its usual land and seek refuge in the branches of trees.

The special structure of the stomach allows them to digest nuts with a shell so hard that it can only be broken with a hammer.

Unlike other species, Nicobar pigeons fly in columns, and white tails help them to navigate in a flock, serving as a kind of beacons for those flying from behind.

However, an old acquaintance does not at all exclude courtship and mating dances, which can last for several days.

The basis of the marriage ceremony is all kinds of obeisances, decorated with bright tints of the raised mantle. At the end of the solemn part, the time for mating comes - the male chooses a place suitable for the nest a few meters from the ground and collects brushwood, from which the female builds a comfortable and stable nest.

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