Wednesday, 14 January 2015

Painted spurfowl

Galloperdix lunulata

Photo by Rishiraj Deval (India Nature Watch)

Common name:
painted spurfowl (en); perdiz-colorida (pt); galloperdrix lunulée (fr); faisancillo moteado (es); perlspornhuhn (de)

Taxonomy:
Order Galliformes
Family Phasianidae

Range:
This species is endemic to India, being found south of the Gangetic Plain, from eastern Rajasthan to West Benghal and south to southern Karnataka and northern Tamil Nadu.

Size:
These birds are 27-34 cm long. Males tend to be larger than females, weighing 255-285 g, while females weigh 225-255 g.

Habitat:
The painted spurfowl is mostly found in dry scublands, including Anogeissus, Bridelia, Acacia and Mimosa, also using rocky hillsides. They are present from sea level up to an altitude of 900 m.

Diet:
They feed mainly on seeds, berries, fruits and tubers of various plants, such as Zizyphus, Lantana and Ficus, as well as flowers and some insects.

Breeding:
Painted spurfowl breed in January-August. They are believed to be monogamous and nest on a shallow scrape on the ground, lined with leaves, and often located under the cover of a boulder. The female lays 3-5 pale creamy eggs. The female incubates the eggs alone, but both parents take care of the young. There is no information regarding the length of the incubation and fledging periods.

Conservation:
IUCN status - LC (Least Concern)
This species has a very large breeding range and is described as locally frequent. The population is suspected to be stable in the absence of evidence for any declines or substantial threats.

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