Breeding peafowl is rewarding but can be frustrating. A single peacock will breed with up to five peahens, called a harem. A group of peafowl is called a muster. Care must be taken with free ranging peafowl to see which peacocks are fertile and mating to ensure inbreeding does not occur.
when inbred peachicks hatch with deformities in their feet, legs and eyes.
The peacocks with the longest most impressive tails will be seen by the peahens as the most fertile. Peahens ignore a younger male with a shorter tail.
The peacock will display his tail, dance and strut for the peahens who will casually walk past the peacocks until they are ready to mate.
The peahens will lay an egg every other day in clutches throughout the breeding period of March to August dependant on the weather. If it is a mild winter and a warm spring the peafowl can start breeding earlier in the season than usual. We have had the peacocks start calling in February!
Optimising the peafowl breeding season
Remove the eggs regularly so the peahens will continue laying in cycles . The peahens will lay an egg every other day having a break of 10–14 days before starting to lay again. They can lay up to three cycles during the season.
When selecting birds for breeding it is important to remember that not all colours and peafowl varieties breed true.
In the UK we have very limited breeding stock for the rare breeds. Breeding peafowl should be unrelated. In USA while establishig the breed Cameo peafowl were continually inbred. Consequently some cameo peafowl were born blind or developed blindness.
At Peacocks UK we take our responsibility with the rare breeds of peafowl we imported into the UK very seriously. We establish three separate blood lines for each breed.
Breeding Indian blue peahens into the rare breeds to keep the stock strong and disease free. We know the male parentage of each peachick. We rotate the peahens through the peacocks each year. This ensures that inbreeding of the peafowl does not occur.
Originally published by Peacocks UK