Melchior d'Hondecoeter specialized in the portrayal of birds. He painted not only chickens, ducks, peacocks and turkeys, but also exotic birds. This painting was commissioned by the stadholder Willem III and his wife Mary for Het Loo Palace. Keeping exotic animals in a menagerie was popular among the well-to-do owners of country homes. Willem III had a number of menageries, including one at Het Loo Palace.
Probably painted for Het Loo palace. Transferred to the vestibule of the Hunting Lodge at Soestdijk palace. From 1800 in the National Konst-Gallery in Huis ten Bosch palace in The Hague, the precursor of the Rijksmuseum.