Siamese Fireback (Lophura diardi)

Other Names: Diard’s Fireback, Diard’s Crested Fireback, Siamese Crested Fireback

Range: Indo-China north to Vietnam to eastern Thailand.

Subspecies: None

Habitat: Very dense forests, bamboo and evergreen from sea-level to 2,000 feet.

Description: Very beautiful bird that will attain its adult plumage the first year. The crest is long and made up of purple-black feathers. The facial wattles are bright red, the throat, head and face behind the wattles are black. The breast, neck and upper back is gray with very fine vermiculations. The middle of the back is bright yellow (hence the name “fireback”), the lower back is metallic blue with chestnut fringes. The tail is long and curved with metallic black, blue and green sheens. The wings are gray with black and white streaks; the belly and lower areas are black. The bill is yellow, legs and feet red. Like other species of Lophura, they can grow fairly long spurs that the keeper will need to keep trimmed to prevent injuries to the hen when breeding.

Description, Female: Fireback hens, despite not being colorful, their unique markings make them more attractive than other pheasant hens. The Siamese Fireback hen has no crest, her facial wattles are smaller than the male’s, but just as bright. The head, throat, chin and neck are grayish-brown; the upper back and upper breast are bright chestnut. The lower back, wings and tail are chestnut, vermiculated with white and black. The bill is dark gray and the legs and feet are red.

Breeding Season: May to July.

Breeding Age: Third year, but I’ve heard from those who have had some second year males that were fertile. Males will attain adult plumage the first year, but will have smaller tails than mature birds.

Clutch Size: 5 to 8 eggs.

Incubation Period: 24-25 days.