Great argus
Common Name:Great argus
Scientific Name:Argusianus argus
Location:Malaysia, Myanmar, Thailand Found in Malaysian peninsula and eastern Indonesia. Habitat:Lowland and foothill, primary and secondary, forest. Status in wild:Vulnerable Threat To Species:Habitat loss and excessive hunting.
General:The great argus is one of the largest pheasants in the world. Though at distance, both male and female appear cryptic brown, the plumage color is actually very complex, with varied patterns and shades of brown, black, grey, and ochre. Both sexes have blue facial skin and short crests.
Male:The male argus pheasant has one of the most exaggerated plumages in the avian world, both in form and pattern. The secondary wing feathers, important in most other birds for flight, have evolved as organs for courtship display to the point that the bird can fly only with difficulty, and they are ornamented with some of the most complex and subtle eye-spot patterns of any bird. The tail feathers are also greatly elongated and intricately patterned. The male's crest is a short black "Mohawk."
Female:The female has redder plumage than the male, her wings and tail are of normal proportions, and her crest is longer, looser, and lighter colored.
Wing Span:
Male/Female 3.5ft
Male 6.5ft
Female 2.5ft
Birth 28oz
Male/Female 3.9-4.9lbs
Social:Great argus, like other pheasant species, are generally shy and elusive. They are rarely seen in the wild, although the male's yelping or wailing call can be heard for miles. This species is generally solitary throughout the year, except when females visit male courtship arenas to breed.
Reproduction:The great argus reaches sexual maturity at three years of age. In breeding season, the male clears a "dancing court" on the forest floor of vegetation and debris. From the vicinity he calls to advertise his presence to females, who visit the court to mate. When a female arrives, the male circles her and spreads his wings into two immense fans displaying hundreds of eye-spots (hence the name "Argus" after the hundred-eyed titan of Greek mythology). After mating, the female departs and lays two buff colored eggs in a secluded scrape on the forest floor. The male takes no part in nesting, incubation, or rearing the young. The chicks weigh 1.7 - 1.8 oz. when hatched and soon leave the nest area following closely behind their mother. Their wing feathers grow quickly, allowing them to fly long before they reach adult size. 
Incubation Period:24Days

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