Endemic birds
Endemic bird

Ceylon Junglefowl Gallus lafayettii

Sri Lanka Junglefowl


Sinhalese - Wali-Kukula

Tamil- Kattu Koli

Ceylon JunglefowlThe Ceylon Junglefowl occurs throughout the island wherever there is adequate forest cover. In the hills it ventures into tea estates, which have forest cover close by.  Though common, it is not easy to observe except in protected areas, as it is a shy bird which runs for cover at the slightest disturbance. In most National Parks however the bird is more confiding and can be observed without much difficulty.

The bird generally associates in pairs. Young males associate together at times. The brilliantly coloured male is noticed more often than the female. The latter is more soberly coloured as well as more secretive.

The Junglefowl is a ground dweller spending its time looking for the insects, grain and seed, which form its food. Early mornings and evenings the bird will often venture out of cover looking for food especially after a shower of rain. In the hills, when Nillu is in flower the bird gathers to these areas to feed on the fruits of this plant. Though preferring to thread its way through undergrowth, it is able to fly short distances. The Junglefowl will fly on to a tree to roost at night as well as escape danger.

The cock bird’s call is distinctive and has been likened to the words ‘ Chiok, chaw- choyik’. This call serves as a warning to others to keep away from its territory.

The Junglefowl breeds during the early part of the year, though often there is a secondary season around August-September, laying two to four eggs in a small scrape in the ground placed at the foot of a tree or in undergrowth. At times the nest is placed above ground level. The eggs are cream-white in ground colour peppered with dark brown. The female alone incubates and the chicks are closely attended to by her after they hatch out.

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