The Victoria crowned pigeon lives on the forest floor of the rainforests in the north of New Guinea and the islands of Yapen and Biak. It differs from other species of crowned pigeon in that the crest is larger with white patches and dark edges on the wings. Crowned pigeons are the largest of all living pigeons and can weigh up to 2.5 kg.
- Distribution / Resident
- Extint in the wild
- Critically endangered
- In Danger
- Near threatened
- Minor concern
- Insufficient data
- Not evaluated
Discover how they are
Crowned pigeons are the largest pigeons that exist and they can weigh up to 2.5 kg. The plumage of the Victoria-crowned pigeon is blue, with a brown chest and a conspicuous white spot on the wings. Their eyes are red, framed by black eyebrows, with a crest of delicate long blue feathers spotted with black and white high on the head. The other species that lives at the Barcelona Zoo, the blue-crowned pigeon, is different due to having a blue chest and blue head feathers without black-and-white spots.
They inhabit lowland mangroves and rainforests in northern New Guinea and other nearby smaller islands, where they travel in small flocks of between two and a dozen individuals.
Their diet is fundamentally herbivore. They eat fallen fruits, seeds, berries and tender shoots, although it can also capture small invertebrates.
The nests are large platforms made with leaves and twigs that they build in branches some distance from the ground. They lay one white egg and incubate it 30 days
They are sedentary birds that do not make seasonal migrations. Although they are essentially terrestrial, they tend to spend nights high in treetops.
In recent years, wild populations of this species have suffered a steep decline, due to overhunting for human consumption and, primarily, the deforestation of their forest habitat.
The Barcelona Zoo participates in the European Studbook (ESB) for this species in captivity and keeps an important breeding colony of this endangered pigeon.