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fowl, pheasants, quail, and relatives


The galliform birds are sometimes called the chicken-like birds. This group includes the ancestors of domesticated chickens, called fowl , as well as pheasants, quail, turkeys , and many other similar kinds of birds. They are all medium to large-sized birds with large, rounded bodies and short, blunt wings. They have well-developed legs and generally walk and run more than they fly. Their social systems are very diverse but males often have elaborate and colorful plumage for attracting females to mate. They are mostly omnivorous, eating fruits, seeds, invertebrates and almost anything else they can find. Galliform birds are found throughout the world.

University of Michigan Museum of ZoologyNational Science Foundation

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. "Galliformes" (On-line), Animal Diversity Web. Accessed April 19, 2024 at

BioKIDS is sponsored in part by the Interagency Education Research Initiative. It is a partnership of the University of Michigan School of Education, University of Michigan Museum of Zoology, and the Detroit Public Schools. This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant DRL-0628151.
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