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Pied Imperial Pigeon

Ducula bicolor
Conservation Status: 
Least Concern on the IUCN Red List.
Range: 
Southeast Asia, from Myanmar and Thailand south to Java and east to the Phillipines, and the Bird’s Head Peninsula in New Guinea.
Habitat: 
Forests, woodland, plantations, scrub, and mangrove.

Pied Imperial Pigeons are migratory birds who travel in flocks, mostly at dusk and dawn. They are some of the most agile and powerful flyers in the bird world and they have larger flight muscles than most other bird groups, which makes them able to cross large bodies of water to go to different islands.  They eat fruit and berries, especially wild figs and large fruits of the wild nutmeg.

To keep their feathers in optimal condition, these pigeons do rain-bathing. They will crouch to the side and tuck one wing under their body. The other wing is raised and spread so that water can hit the underside. After a few minutes, they will switch wings. They have powder down feathers for waterproofing instead of oil secreted from a gland.

Feathers with melanin have increased resistance to wear, so the Pied Imperial Pigeon has dark, melanin-containing feathers on the tips of its wings and tail that experience the most wear.  The word “pied” simply means that there are large patches of black and white feathers on their bodies.