Greater bird of paradise

Paradisaea apoda subfamily

Paradisaeinae taxonomy

Paradisaea apoda Linnaeus, 1758, India = Aru Islands of Indonesia. Two subspecies.

other common names

English: Great bird of paradise; French: Paradisier grand-émeraude; German: Gottervogel; Spanish: Ave del Paraíso Grande.

physical characteristics

13.8-16.9 in (35-43 cm); female 0.37-0.38 lb (170-173 g), male (no weights avialable). The largest of the plumed birds of paradise. Forehead to nape a pale orange-yellow. Forecrown, lores, ear coverts, chin, and throat have fine, iridescent yellowish green feathers. Dark brown ruffled feathers form a breast cushion; brownish upperparts, tail, and abdomen. Bright yellow elongated flank plumes fade to whitish with beige tips. Bill is pale bluish gray. Females drab brown in color and lack long feathers.


The south of the western half of the New Guinea mainland, excluding the western peninsulas, and the Aru Islands. Lowlands to about 3,300 ft (1,000 m) altitude. P. a. apoda: Aru Islands of Irian Jaya, Indonesia; P. a. novaeguineae : southern New Guinea from Timika, Irian Jaya, eastward to the Fly/Strickland Rivers watershed, western Papua New Guinea.


Lowland and hill forests.


Males remove foliage from lek perches. Males are highly vocal and perform animated flank plumage manipulations, body postures, and movements about lek perches in courtship display. The most common lek advertisement song consists of repeated loud, deep, wauk or wonk notes.

feeding ecology and diet

Actively animated in foraging. Eats fruits and animals (mostly arthropods).

reproductive biology

Polygynous, with intensely lekking and promiscuous adult males forming loudly vocal aggregations at traditional display trees. Breeding during at least August through December, March, and May. Known clutches are all of one egg. Incubation and nestling periods unknown.

conservation status

Sufficiently widespread and common to be of no concern as a species, but some local populations have declined.

significance to humans

Adult males were of great significance to the plume trade but modern usage is restricted to local head dress adornment. Live and stuffed adult males are, however, still traded throughout Indonesia and beyond, and this illegal exploitation could represent a limited threat to some populations. ♦

0 0

Post a comment