The colorful Nicobar pigeon has such a strong, hooked bill that it can crack open nuts that would require a hammer for a human. They also feed on fruit and various invertebrates found among the leaf litter on the wooded islands they inhabit. Hunting and habitat loss are threatening the species’ survival.
Living and feeding on the forest floor like a pheasant, the white-naped pheasant pigeon flushes noisily when disturbed. Other than its typical pigeon head, it resembles more a small ground fowl. Its long moaning coo, also uncharacteristic of a pigeon, carries a long distance through the forest.
Social structure: Solitary
The Victoria crowned pigeon is quite spectacular, named for the tall, wispy fan of feathers it raises on top of its head. The largest of all living pigeons, the Victoria crowned pigeon gathers in small flocks to forage for fruits and berries that have fallen to the forest floor.
Overgrazing by cattle and drought reduce the amount of grassland habitat available for the quail, which depend on plants for food and cover to protect them and their ground nests from predators. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is working to reestablish masked bobwhite quail populations in Arizona.
Difficult to spot its green feathers among the foliage, the Jambu fruit dove’s soft cooing gives it away. Generally solitary or in pairs, a flock of doves will gather together at a fruiting tree to feed. They pluck fruits directly from the tree or feast on fruits knocked to the ground by monkeys and hornbills.
The largest member of the pheasant family, the peacock is famous for its striking appearance. Each year the male peacock grows colorful tail feathers up to several feet long. He spreads out these blue and green patterned feathers in a large fan and shivers them to attract a mate.