Complicated courtships of Bird-of-paradise

RaggiparadiesvogelThe appearance of the bird of paradise species is very different. Some of them have complicated courtship rituals that usually take place in good weather. The males of the Greater Bird-of-paradise (Paradisaea apoda) display e.g. in the early morning and shortly before sunset in groups in the canopy of the trees, often at a height of more than 40 meters. The same applies fort he Raggiana Bird-of-paradise (Paradisaea raggiana). In these competitions each bird tries to get the attention of a female by calling out loudly and impressively presenting the decorative feathers. Such a courtship dance is a real frenzy of colors, calls and movement. The Blue Bird-of-paradise (Paradisaea rudolphi), on the other hand, mates alone and tries to attract a female with constant loud calls. When a possible partner comes, the male swings backwards on its branch until it hangs upside down and spreads its blue feathers on its wings and flanks. The call of the Ribbon-tailed Astrapia (Astrapia mayeri) also sounds in the early morning hours in the canopy of the forest. The males are quite shy, but the females are relatively easy to observe while foraging on mossy branches. The King-of-Saxony Bird-of-paradise (Pteridophora alberti) lets out his courtship calls high up in the treetops, but the actual courtship and mating take place a few meters above the forest floor on a liana. The male sees only very poorly due to his two 50 centimeter long head feathers and is almost deaf. The Magnificent Bird-of-paradise (Cicinnurus magnificus) acts like a clown during courtship on a branch directly above the forest floor. Eastern Parotia (Parotia helenae), on the other hand, perform their courtship dances on the forest floor, in a spot that has been carefully cleaned of branches and leaves. When some females have settled on the branches close to the ground, which offer a good view, the males begin to present their plumage elegantly like ballet dancers. As a rule, the male birds of paradise court all year round, while the plain feathered females build the nests and raise the offspring. The people of New Guinea like to observe the behavior of the birds of paradise and imitate them in dances. The colorful, long feathers are also very popular. It is not uncommon to see men with hairstyles using feathers from five different birds of paradise at a local market.

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