Siamese fireback

The national bird of Thailand, symbolizing the wildlife heritage of the country

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One of the most striking birds found in the forests of Southeast Asia, particularly in Thailand, where it is revered as the national bird. Its vibrant plumage and majestic presence make it a symbol of the rich biodiversity of the region.

The Siamese Fireback is a medium-sized pheasant that is most notable for its spectacular appearance. Males have a striking combination of colors: their bodies are predominantly black with a metallic blue sheen, and they feature a rich, fiery orange to red patch on their lower backs and rump, which gives the bird its name. The tail is long and graduated, adorned with white feathers. Females are less colorful but still possess a subtle beauty with their mainly brown and black feathering that provides excellent camouflage.

These birds prefer evergreen forests and deciduous woodlands, usually in more secluded areas away from human disturbance. They are ground dwellers but roost in trees to avoid predators.

Siamese Firebacks are omnivorous, with a diet that includes a variety of seeds, fruits, insects, and small animals. They forage on the forest floor, scratching the leaf litter with their strong feet to uncover food.

In terms of behavior, they are shy and elusive, often detected by their calls rather than seen. During the breeding season, males perform vivid displays, showcasing their beautiful plumage to attract females and to ward off rival males.

Distribution

Country
Population est.
Status
Year
Comments
Cambodia
2,000
Official estimate
LC
2016
Laos
2016
Myanmar
2016
Thailand
5,000
Official estimate
LC
2016
Vietnam
2016

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Terrestrial / Aquatic

Altricial / Precocial

Polygamous / Monogamous

Dimorphic (size) / Monomorphic

Active: Diurnal / Nocturnal

Social behavior: Solitary / Pack / Herd

Diet: Carnivore / Herbivore / Omnivore / Piscivorous / Insectivore

Migratory: Yes / No

Domesticated: Yes / No

Dangerous: Yes / No