Difference Between Peacock and Peafowl

Peacock vs Peafowl

Peacock is undoubtedly one of the most attractive birds with a characteristically long and flashy tail feathers. Their tail feathers make the most popular difference between their males and females. Although, their vocals are not very popular among people, the appearance and some of the reproductive behaviours are mesmerizing. Those differences between the two sexes in relation to their biology would be important to know.


The male bird is known as peacock. Peacocks are larger; weighing about four to six kilograms, and measuring about 40 to 46 inches from bill to tail. The most prominent feature of the peacock is the extra long tail feathers called the train, which appears as a decorated wall panel. The train is made up of more than 200 feathers creating eyespots as decorations. Peacock erects and spreads the train with fluttering wings as means of showing off its beauty for a female. This whole process appears as a dance. In the absence of a female, the train held parallel to the ground according to Harrison (1999). In addition to the colourful train, the contrastingly blue body of the peacock is beautiful. The wings have a streaked design of brown and white. Plumage around the eyes is white in colour, which gives them another unique beauty. Despite all those attractive features, the loud ‘peehawn’ call sounds lousy. They roost on trees and mainly diurnal. The crest of bare-shafted feathers is another eye-catching feature of peacocks. Males are the attractive in their appearance and behaviours, but the loud call is miserable.


Peafowl is the commonly used term to refer to female peafowl. They are usually smaller than peacocks, weighing less than four kilograms. The head is brown in colour, and the neck is metallic green. Head bears the crest made up of bare-shafted feathers, but its prominence is low. The body is shaded-brown in colour. The tail and rest also are brown in colour. White coloured short feathers on either side cover the belly. The overall colorfulness is less attractive in the females, which is because peafowl makes the final call about the mating partner. She usually likes to mate with the most attractive peacock. Upon a successful mating, female lays white-coloured eggs and incubates them until hatch. The incubation time is almost a month (28 – 30 days). Eggs are light brown coloured and slightly smaller than turkey eggs. The call of the peafowl sounds ‘kwikkuk kwikkukkuk’ and sometimes ‘kra kraak’.


What is the difference between Peacock and Peafowl?

• Peacocks are larger than the peafowls.

• Males are more distinctive with a long, widespread, colourful, and beautiful train.

• Train is made up of more than 200 feathers in males whereas females’ tail feathers are not that long.

• Overall colouration of the body is dull in females as they do not have to market them for the males, whereas peacocks are contrastingly colourful and attractive.

• Peacock performs dances with erected train and flutters its wings to attract the peafowl while she watches it

• Female incubates the eggs but male does not.

• The calls are distinctive between the two, as peacock sounds loud and lousy while peafowl does not call loudly.