Nicobar pigeon in exhibit

Nicobar Pigeon

Scientific Name
Caloenas nicobarica
Geographic Range
Islands throughout Southeast Asia
Fruits and seeds (also insects)
Nicobar pigeon in exhibit Endangered Status Graph - Near Threatened Endangered Status Graph - Near Threatened

More Information

Nicobar pigeons are blue-green with brighter iridescent green on their wings and back. They have long, hair-like feathers that fall from the back of their head and neck, along with a black beak and legs. These birds are social and nomadic and often live in dense colonies, especially during breeding season.

After courtship, they construct platform-like nests in trees up to 30 feet off the ground. After an incubation of around a month, chicks born nearly naked and stay that way for 10 days. They are independent by 30 days and become adults at one year of age.

Did You Know?

  • Genetically, Nicobar pigeons are the closest living relative to the extinct dodo.
  • These birds are well adapted to small islands. They prefer uninhabited islands with subtropical or tropical forests, although they will forage for food on the mainland or larger nearby islands.
  • Mothers feed chicks with crop milk, which originates in a part of their digestive tract and is unique to birds.
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