May 21 2013 Latest news:
BY RICHARD CORNWELL, Felixstowe editor
Wednesday, September 5, 2012
IT’S one of the more unusual sounds of the countryside – and certainly one of the most piercing.
■ The birds, which live up to 20 years in the wild, have been kept as pets for thousands of years.
■ Only the male is technically a “peacock”, while the females are peahens, and together they are known as peafowl.
■ The large colourful train of feathers, which can be arched into a stunning fan, is used in mating rituals and courtship displays.
■ Experts believe females choose their mates according to the size, colour, and quality of the fabulous feather fan.
Some say it’s the most annoying sound in the world, and on the borders of Trimley St Mary and Trimley St Martin, it’s definitely not popular, keeping residents awake at night, and creating a bit of a puzzle as it’s not been heard before.
The noise is being made by peacocks – wonderfully colourful creatures, beautiful until they open their beaks.
They make a very loud high-pitched, penetrating meow-like call – and they do it most during the mating season, from early spring to early autumn.
And their favourite time to yell is dawn and late evening, just when everyone else would like a little peace and quiet.
Experts say peacocks tend to wander and new owners often don’t know how to get them to stay home, though even the ways of encouraging them to sit tight are not always successful.
One resident of Trimley St Mary said: “Living in the country, you expect to hear country sounds – but these birds are not part of the country and so not what you would normally hear.
“We’ve not heard it here before so it’s been a bit unexpected. I think everyone round here would like to get to the bottom of it.”
Environmental health officers across the country are often plagued with calls about the shrill and raucous noise of the birds.
Some reports say peacocks can heard up to five miles away – especially at quiet times when there is less general noise in the environment and traffic noise is less.
A Suffolk Coastal spokesman said: “We are not aware of any complaints about peacocks on the Felixstowe peninsula.
“If we did receive any complaints we might be able to take action if the peacocks were being kept by someone, rather than being loose and wild, and discuss with the owners what might be done to reduce any noise nuisance.”