What do the peacocks eat?

Each week, we ask you to share your questions about farming, food or Sacrewell with us on Facebook. The person who writes the best question wins a free tractor ride for a child and accompanying adult, as well as having their question answered on our website. This question came from Emma Mehmed’s three year old son.

The peacocks at Sacrewell are free to roam wherever they like on the farm so they are opportunistic feeders. They can often be seen lurking near the picnic tables outside the mill, waiting for a family picnic to finish so they can enjoy the crumbs that have been left behind. They can also easily hop over the fences in our animal paddocks and have been known to nibble on the seed and cereal mixes that we feed to our goats and sheep.

Peafowl (the term used for both male peacocks and female peahens) are not a native British species. The blue ones which you can see at Sacrewell originally come from India and Sri Lanka. There are also green peacocks from Java and Myanmar and a third, lesser-known species called the Congo peacock which has a range of coloured feathers.

In the wild, peafowl forage for plants, insects and small creatures which they can find on the ground. They are omnivores, which means that they eat both plants and animals. The peacocks at Sacrewell forage around the farm in the same way. They’ll find plenty of plants and insects in the hedgerows that line our paths and paddocks.

Although the Sacrewell peacocks are happy to take advantage of an easy meal, it is much healthier for them to move around and search for food in a natural way. We would ask our visitors to remember this when they are having their picnics and ensure that any rubbish or leftover food gets safely stored inside our wheelie bins.