Peacocks are some of the most majestic animals on the planet. Native to Southern and Southeast Asia, the blue Indian peacock is the most common breed that people are used to seeing on television and in zoos.
These birds may be absolutely stunning, but are they edible? Most people consider peacocks as one of nature’s most beautiful forms of eye candy, but is there anyone that takes this turn of phrase a little too seriously?
Do people eat peacocks?
People in some parts of the world do eat peacocks. Even though eating this majestic bird would be frowned upon in most areas of the world, there are some corners of the globe where peacock meat is considered to be a delicacy. In some parts of India and China, peacock meat is sold at a high price to those who want an exotic meal.
In the U.S., there is a relatively niche market for peacock meat, as the species is not protected by any specific
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Who Eats Peacock Meat?
In most places where peacock meat can be purchased, it will go for very high prices. Some claim that meat can go for up to 25-30 dollars per kilogram, or around 11-13 US Dollars per pound when sold in domestic meat markets.
To put that into perspective, ground beef usually goes for anywhere between 3 and 8 dollars per pound. Because of this, peacock meat tends to be sold to those who have a few extra dollars to spend on local delicacies.
According to DailyMail.com, peacocks are actively sold in some Chinese markets for varying prices depending on the bird’s sex. Males are much more expensive than females; while a female may only be sold for about about 48 US Dollars (£36), a male can go for up to 124 US Dollars (£93).
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Is it Legal to Eat Peacocks in India and China?
In China, laws are restricting the sale and consumption of wild animals. Many peacocks are captured from their native habitats and then sold for meat without the proper permit, making the trade largely illegal.
There are similar laws in the US related to hunting and fishing; a person can’t harvest wild game unless they have the appropriate permissions to do so.
There are two different types of peacocks in China: green peacocks and Indian peacocks, also known as blue peacocks. Green peacocks are a protected species in China, and therefore cannot be legally bought or sold for meat. However, no similar restrictions are protecting the Indian peacock.
On the other hand, India is far more rigid in protecting this species. In order to preserve the species, the Indian government has made it illegal to kill or eat peacocks, whether they were caught in the wild or raised in captivity. However, this does not stop poachers from continuing to hunt this beautiful creature.
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Is it Legal to Eat Peacocks in the U.S.?
There are no laws prohibiting peacock meat consumption in the U.S. Because it is technically not a protected species, there are no legal restrictions that prohibit the peacock meat trade.
The biggest hotspot for domestic peacock meat lies in California. There is a company called Exotic Meat Market specializing in raising, slaughtering, and distributing various kinds of exotic meats. Peacock meat can be found listed alongside other rare dishes, such as iguana and camel meat.
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Can Peacock Meat Be Imported into the U.S.?
When considering importing exotic meats, one has to be very careful that the product meets the applicable importation guidelines. As for peacock meat, it doesn’t appear as though there are many specific restrictions that disallow the importation of this odd exotic dish. The biggest concern that must be addressed is the possibility of meat being a potential source of disease.
Read next all about how to keep peacocks from flying away or learn the difference between peacocks and peahen.
Most people that have eaten peacock meat compare it to chicken. It has been said to have a slightly stronger taste than chicken, or even tastes a bit like turkey,
Peacock meat can be extremely expensive, especially if it is being imported from another country. According to Exotic Meat Market, one bird can be up to 300 USD.
Yes, some people may also eat peacock eggs, although these are just as rare as meat. A single peacock egg can sell for 70 USD and is about three times larger than regular chicken eggs. The flavor of peacock eggs has been described as being very similar to that of chicken eggs.