Polyplectron emphanum Temminck, 1831

Vertebrate - Bird

Palawan Peacock-Pheasant ; Tandikan
Vulnerable (IUCN)

In terms of appearance, the male Palawan peacock-pheasant or ‘tandikan’ is totally different from the female by having a long metallic blue crest; mantle and wing-coverts, metallic blue-green with the basal half of feathers dull black; back, rump, and tail black, spotted and marked with rusty brown; upper tail-coverts and rectrices with large metallic blue ocelli bordered by black and gray. Each leg has 2 to 3 spurs. On the other hand, the female is generally brown in color and no spurs on legs.

During the mating season, several males vie for the female’s attention by dancing in a clear area. The best dancer gets the female peacock.

The Palawan peacock-pheasant is endemic to Palawan. It inhabits forests and second-growth, staying mostly on the forest floor. It is difficult to see this bird because of its shy and wary nature. At the first sign of an intruder, it quietly and quickly walks away without a trace. Its food consists of fruits, seeds, insects, and other small animals.

Currently considered as endangered, its population is continuously declining due to the destruction of its habitat and indiscriminate hunting for the pet trade. With its present status, its inclusion under Appendix I of CITES wherein its commercial export or trade is prohibited, is one way of saving this magnificent bird from extinction.

This page was last modified Tuesday, June 21, 2011
National Museum of the Philippines
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