Nicobar scrubfowl

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The Nicobar scrubfowl (Megapodius nicobariensis) belongs to the family of megapodes, Megapodiidae. There are two recognized subspecies of Nicobar scrubfowl. The subspecies M. n. nicobariensis is found in Nicobar islands, Teressa, Bompoka, Tillanchong, Camorta, Trinkat, Katchall, of India. The subspecies M. n. abbotti occurs in Nicobar islands, Meroe, Treis, Menchal, Little Nicobar, Great Nicobar and Kondul of India.

The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) has categorized and evaluated these megapode species and has listed them as "Vulnerable".

These scrubfowl are medium sized, measuring 35 to 45 cm in length and weighing 600 to 900 grams. These species are found only in the Nicobar Islands of India. Unlike other Galliform birds, the hind toe situated on the same level as the front toes. They have a rufous crest and bare reddish facial skin. Male and female birds look alike in appearance and size.

These scrubfowl inhabit the dense forest undergrowth, both dry deciduous and evergreen forests. They feed on seeds, insects, snails, crustaceans and reptiles. They build large mound nest. The hatchlings have feathers at the time of hatching and are able to fly. They do not need parental care. These birds are monogamous.

Indian birds - Nicobar scrubfowl - Megapodius nicobariensis
Indian birds - Nicobar scrubfowl - Megapodius nicobariensis

Biological classification of Megapodius nicobariensis
Species:M. nicobariensis
Binomial name:Megapodius nicobariensis
Distribution:Nicobar Islands (India);
Feeding habits: seeds, insects, snails, crustaceans and reptiles;
IUCN status listing:Vulnerable

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Image source: File:NicobarMegapodeEmu.jpg
Author: R W Shufeldt | License: Public domain
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