Friday, July 27, 2007

Bait and switch

This is how the resident peacock, Mr. Pea (named by Betty of Galla Creek), presented himself in March of this year:


Whaddaya think of that tail? Pretty impressive, isn't it? That's the tail he wore during mating season, the one he fanned out for his lady while he did his little seduction dance. It takes a lot of feathers like the one below to create a gorgeous tail like that.


Mating season obviously ended sometime after that top photo was shot, and moulting season soon followed. Lately our yard has been full of peacock feathers of all shapes and sizes, feathers such as these:


Now that he's no longer desperate to please his mate, Mr. Pea has changed into his "old-married-man" tail, the peacock equivalent of running around in his boxer shorts:


He reminds me of my first husband, who drove a candy-apple-red Ford Thunderbird at the time we got married. Even though I wasn't particularly into either sportscars or status symbols, it did strike me as odd that he traded in the Thunderbird for a pickup truck within a week after our wedding.

Birds of a feather.

13 comments:

  1. Oh man, at the cabin years and years ago, the peacock that could not break away from his visage in Dad's hubcap, well, he did the same thing. He was so about fighting the other guy (himself) for territory that he completely missed opportunity. Not Greek., not Roman, it is Avian mythology, yeah?

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  2. Oh, and in doing so he lost a season of feathers. Poor guy.

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  3. Velvet, I was not aware they lost all that plumage! Maybe our flock is so large, I'm getting them mixed up cause we always have at least one grand looking male. Maybe it also has to do with our warmer weather?

    I loved your take on this... very funny as always.

    Holly

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  4. have you seen the lady pea fowl?glad you finally got a trash can.

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  5. Your last paragraph reminds me of my father when he courted his seventh wife while driving a Cadillac and living in San Antonio. After she married him, he traded it in for a pickup with no air conditioning and moved her to Missouri! No wonder she got it annulled. Glad Mr. Pea has given up his dandy ways for now. Carmon

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  6. Duly Inspired, your comment is so visual, it leaves me smiling and humming Carly Simon's "You're So Vain."

    Holly, you live in the Los Angeles area, right? I read in the tabloids that it's always mating season out there. Oh, and thinking about other things I've read about L.A., is it possible that the out-of-season plumage could be the result of transplants or feather extensions?

    Patsy, I haven't seen the peahen even one time this summer. She's probably home where she belongs, raising the peababies, while her philandering mate works the neighborhood in search of easy handouts.

    Carmon, your father and my first husband must have studied under the same master.

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  7. I guess males are the same throughout the animal kingdom.

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  8. Holly, I meant "implants," not "transplants."

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  9. Velvet, You have me giggling! I think you must be right! I'm going to have to search for a plastic peacock surgeon!

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  10. Mr. Pea is my dream of what I will never be...so beautiful. Everyone's prince!

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  11. Janet, I think you're right about that.

    Sister-Three, he IS beautiful, but you have a lot going for you, too. Like you've probably never once pooped all over somebody's car.

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  12. I had no idea peacocks did that! I'm still trying to get over how cool it is that one adopted you.

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  13. I really had to laugh, reading this post. I feel like I can relate. LOL (I think Janet may be right).

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