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A few weeks ago I encountered a peacock while driving to a friend's house in Central KY, USA. I don't believe I've ever seen a peacock in KY, and when attempting to ID [just through Google searches], I could only find restaurants & musical artists that contain "peacock" in their name.

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Can someone help me ID this bird? And, are peacocks wild in KY? Have they always been, and are just rare? Aside from species ID, any insights about this bird and its prevalence within KY would be most appreciated.

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    $\begingroup$ The answer below is correct. I just wanted to add, having kept peafowl, that the male looses all of the beautiful feathers of his tail once a year, and as a result, looks pitiful (to my tainted eye; after all, he's "supposed to be proud of his tail") for a number of weeks while the new ones grow back. Your peacock is in the process of growing his back, and looks pretty good, although note the absence of the long trailing green/blue iridescent tail feathers. (I didn't know this and panicked when my first male molted!) $\endgroup$ – anongoodnurse Oct 19 '17 at 15:21
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That is the male of the Indian peafowl species (Pavo cristatus), also called the blue peafowl or common peafowl. The male is called a peacock and the female a peahen, collectively peafowl, although often "peacocks" is used instead of peafowl. The hen does not have the impressive tail of the peacock (although she does have a similar crest on the head).

They are not native to Kentucky, or anywhere else in the Americas, but have been widely introduced (because of their appearance). There are only 3 species of peafowl, the green peafowl being similar and native to southeast Asia, and the Congo peafowl being much more subdued and native to Africa.

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  • $\begingroup$ They're a reasonably common ornamental bird among farmers &c, and also kept in some parks for the same reason, e.g. mcmurrayhatchery.com/peafowl.html They've also become naturalized in some places, such as IIRC the Santa Rosa area of California. $\endgroup$ – jamesqf Oct 18 '17 at 18:11

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