India's national bird is rampantly being consumed as medicine, a wildlife organisation has warned.
A study by TRAFFIC, an arm of World Wildlife Fund (WWF), recently found that at least three systems of traditional medicine in India - Siddha, Ayurveda and Unani - prescribe peacock feather and other parts in various potions.
The practice is being followed by quacks and hospitals, including those funded by the ministry of AYUSH, in states like Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Andhra Pradesh, Delhi Gujarat and Rajasthan.
The Indian blue peafowl (Pavo Cristatus) has considerably reduced in numbers over the years thanks to destruction of their habitats by farmers protecting their crops and poachers.
The beautiful bird with brilliant iridescent coloured feathers was numbered at about 15 lakh in a study in 2007.
However, isolated studies and anecdotal evidence suggest that its population has come down to only a few lakh.
Image Credit: @thefuzzybong
Image selection and text narration by: @rajkumarjangra
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