Context: Peafowl population is growing in Kerala.
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Context: An unusual incident in Kerala’s Trissur district — the death of a bridegroom after he was hit by a peafowl (pavocristatus) while driving a bike has turned the spotlight on the increasing population of peafowls in the state.
- Peafowls are considered as a threat to paddy farmers in Kerala as they destroy its seeds and cause man-animal conflict.
- Studies have shown that the peafowl population has been on the rise in the state since the 1980s.
- The growing population of peafowls signals climate change: They are known to grow and thrive in dry conditions.
- They are well adapted to living in forest edges and cultivated areas.
- Humans have, in the last 50 years, encroached the foothills of the Western Ghats in Kerala to cultivate crops and construct buildings. This has resulted in the loss of vegetation and has altered the Western Ghats.
- It is the national bird of India.
- It is protected under Schedule-I of the Wild Life (Protection) Act. The hunting of peacocks is also prohibited under the Act.
- It is listed as of Least Concern by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).
- Poaching of peacocks for their meat and feathers and accidental poisoning by feeding on pesticide treated seeds are known threats to wild birds.