Can you eat peacock?

In this post, I will answer the question: “Can you eat peacock?” I’ll also delve more into peacock meat rules and laws in several countries.

Can you eat peacock?

Yes, you can eat peacocks, but this depends on the country in which you live.

Peacock consumption is both taboo and completely normal in today’s culture. You’ll get varied responses to the topic of whether or not you can eat peacocks depending on where you live.

Peacock meat is not consumed on a weekly basis in the United States or Europe. It’s a niche market, and in most locations, it’s classified as an exotic meal.

People in Asia, on the other hand, used to consume peacocks on a daily basis until recent legal restrictions.

The habit of eating exotic animals was introduced by ancient Greece and the Roman Empire, where there was keen interest in exotic species of animals. A trade developed in species that could be kept as pets; the Greeks and Romans captured and tamed an amazing variety of wild animals, and kept them on their land or in their homes. Among those arrested in private households or collections are mammals and reptiles such as monkeys, ferrets, hedgehogs, deer, giraffes, gazelles, snakes and many birds, including peacocks, parrots, cranes, storks, flamingos, rails, crows, starlings, magpies, thrushes and nightingales. They were eaten, too: Hortensius served roast peacock at his banquets and Apicius was fond of flamingos’ tongues (1). In addition, English barons offered roasted peafowl to their guests in the Middle Ages. So they spread to the world as symbols of wealth and power (2).

What is peacock?

Peacocks are members of the Phasianidae family, which includes quail, turkey, chicken,etc. The male is known as a peacock and has more colorful feathers, whilst the female is known as a peahen and has more neutral colors in her feathers. Peacocks are the largest flying birds among all the birds. The peafowl has 15 known colors: Blue, green, white, purple, cameo, charcoal, opal, bronze, peach, midnight, jade, taupe, sonja’s violeta, hazel and indigo (2).

Peacocks live in the Southern Hemisphere’s warm climates. Peacocks are said to have originated in Asia, although they currently live in portions of Africa and Australia. In India, they are the most common. Deserts, dry savannas, woods, and rich vegetation environments are all home to peacocks. Peacocks weigh 9-13 kilograms and peahens weigh 6-9 kilograms. The average lifetime is approximately 35 years. They live in groups and each group has 1 male and 5-6 females. Males reach sexual maturity at the age of 2-3 and females begin to lying at age 2. Reproduction periods are from April to August (2).

Peacocks are omnivores, feeding on plants, seeds, flower heads, insects, small mammals, amphibians and reptiles.

What is the flavor of peacock?

Despite the fact that many people oppose killing and eating peacocks, both blue and green peacocks are edible and delicious (3). No wonder these birds were served at lavish banquets for Greek and Roman emperors (1).

Peacock meat has a richer flavor and is more tender than chicken meat. Peacock meat has a flavor that some people compare to turkey flesh. Of course, the taste is influenced by how the meat is prepared and seasoned.

Furthermore, the peacock’s food and habitat have a significant impact on the flavor of its flesh.

You’ll undoubtedly notice a difference in flesh quality between farm-raised chicken and store-bought chicken.

It is the same for peacocks. The more naturally they are raised, the more flavorful their meat is.

Is eating peacocks legal?

Wildlife rules and laws are critical for preventing the extinction of endangered species. The laws for various species are influenced by animal population vulnerability and a variety of other factors. Due to poverty and meat lack, many populations appeal to hunting of wild species. Hunting has been a significant factor in local extinctions of the Green Peafowl (Pavo muticus) throughout southeast Asia and its extirpation from Peninsular Malaysia (4).

Depending on the country, there are laws that regulate the consumption of peacocks (3):

  1. USA:

Eating peacocks is perfectly allowed in the United States. Unlike eating owls or flamingos, which are both legally protected bird species, damaging them might get you in trouble.

Peacocks are not listed as endangered or threatened species, and there is no law prohibiting the trading or eating of peacock flesh.

If you’re interested in trying peacock meat, there are Exotic Meat Markets that specialize in the distribution and sale of all types of wild animal meats, including peacocks.

  1. UK:

The Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 protects wild animal species in the United Kingdom.

Peacocks, on the other hand, are not protected species. As a result, you can eat peacocks in the UK without fear of legal repercussions.

  1. China:

In China, there is a law that protects several wild species, similar to the laws in the US and the UK.

It is permissible to eat blue peacocks (also known as Indian peacocks). Green peacocks, on the other hand, are a protected bird species whose flesh cannot be lawfully sold or purchased.

  1. India:

Until the mid-1960s, practically every non-vegetarian in Asia had the chance to try peacock. Peacock flesh was a luxurious and delectable dish.

Peacocks are now protected wildlife in India, and hunting or eating them is prohibited.

Benefits of peacock meat:

Similar to its relatives, the chicken and other poultry meat, a peacock is high in protein. The meat also contains valuable minerals and vitamins, including Potassium, Vitamin B6, Vitamin B12, Iron, Magnesium, Zinc, and Niacin. Peacock meat has many health benefits (3):

  • Protein-dense — Peacocks, like other meats, are high in protein.
  • High in vitamins : peacock meat is high in vitamin B6, vitamin B12, potassium, and iron.
  • Cholesterol-free – Ideal for a low-fat diet.

How to eat peacock?

Peacock meat is made up of a neck, some wings, breasts, and legs, just like chicken flesh.

  1. Necks and wings:

Peacock’s neck is distinct from that of any other bird. Because of its thickness and strong skin, the neck takes longer to cook. It can be readily cooked with a brief boil in an open pot or in a pressure cooker.

Peacock necks can be cooked in soups or over an open fire. Simply cook the neck and wings with onions, carrots, herbs, black peppercorns, celery, ginger, and garlic in a large saucepan for the soup.

  1. Breast:

Peacock breasts are difficult to cook since they are the leanest section of the bird and are not ideal for long cooking. However, you can roast it to crisp up the skin.

You can also cook the breast filets in the oven or on a griddle, just like chicken. This meat goes great with veggies and a bowl of rice.

Brining the breast pieces and then cooking them in the oven is also an option. The chunks can then be diced and used in subs and sandwiches.

  1. Legs:

The peacock’s legs have the strongest flavor. The thigh meat is tender and juicy, with just the appropriate amount of chewiness. It goes well with vegetables and can be used in stews.

Conclusion

In this essay, I answered the question: “Can you eat peacock?” and I provided useful information on its health benefits and consumption methods.

Feel free to ask me any question related to this topic.

References

  1. Hughes, J. Donald. Europe as consumer of exotic biodiversity: Greek and Roman times. Landsc Res, 2003, 28, 21-31. 
  2. Yenilmez, Fatma. Peafowl Production. Turk J Agri-Food Sci Technol , 2020, 8, 945-948.
  3. Can you eat peacock. Outdoor being. 2022.

Hi, I am Charlotte, I love cooking and in my previous life, I was a chef. I bring some of my experience to the recipes on this hub and answer your food questions.