Crested fireback

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Crested fireback
Feuerrückenfasan (Lophura ignita).jpg
Male
Crested Fireback female.jpg
Female at the Jerusalem Biblical Zoo
Conservation status
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Galliformes
Family: Phasianidae
Subfamily: Phasianinae
Genus: Lophura
Species: L. ignita
Binomial name
Lophura ignita
(Shaw, 1797)

The crested fireback (Lophura ignita) is a medium-sized, up to 70 cm long, forest pheasant with a peacock-like dark crest, bluish black plumage, reddish brown rump, black outer tail feathers, red iris and bare blue facial skin. The female is a brown bird with short crest, blue facial skin and spotted black-and-white below.

The crested fireback is found in lowland forests of the Thai-Malay Peninsula, Borneo and Sumatra. There are four subspecies of the crested fireback. Males of the subspecies from Borneo and Bangka Island, L. i. ignita (lesser Bornean crested fireback) and L. i. nobilis (greater Bornean crested fireback), have brown central tail feathers, whitish legs and are rufous below. The male Vieillot's crested fireback, L. i. rufa, of the Thai-Malay Peninsula and most of Sumatra has white central tail feathers, red legs and bluish black streaked white below. The final subspecies, Delacour's crested fireback, L. i. macartneyi, is found in south-eastern Sumatra and the male has white to the tail, whitish legs and a variable amount of rufous below. The female of L. i ignita and L. i. nobilis have a dark, blackish tail and whitish legs, while female of L. i.a rufa has a chestnut brown tail and red legs.

The diet consists mainly of plants, fruits and small animals. The female usually lays between four to eight creamy white eggs.

Due to ongoing habitat loss and overhunting in some areas, the crested fireback is evaluated as Near Threatened on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.[1] It is listed on Appendix III of CITES in Malaysia.

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