Pheasants are birds that have originated from Asia. There are 35 species of Pheasant and they are closely related to Quail, Partridges, and Chickens. It's not unheard of that a flock of Pheasants adopt a lost or abandoned Chicken. These birds cover the globe and are popular targets for game. In some countries eating them is a delicacy. Although their population decreases each year, its population is healthy enough to be considered not endangered.
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Pheasants are kind of small, reaching 20-36 inches in height and up to 4 pounds total in weight. Males are larger than females in this species and they are sexually dysmorphic which means the male and female sexes look different. Male birds become colored brightly around 10 weeks of age and female birds remain mostly brown. Although Pheasant's lives are quite short, they have these skills to incorporate into their survival: the ability to run and fly at high speeds (8-10 miles per hour and 35-45 miles per hour), swim, excellent sense of hearing and eyesight to sense oncoming danger, and the ability to breathe rapidly to expel excess heat and maintain body temperatures.
The pheasant finds itself in a not-so-pleasant spot in the food chain. Pheasants can survive in the wild up to 3 years, but only 2-3% of the population will make it that far. 35% of the birds don't even see their 3rd month. These birds are heavily hunted, by both humans and animals. Of the animals, foxes, hawks, and owls are to blame for eating the bird. Raccoon and skunks are responsible for eating Pheasant eggs. It does not help the Pheasant that they are not migratory birds. They can survive days without eating and have the ability to stick one foot in the snow and look for food sources, but sticking around during cold winters makes them vulnerable to hunting and larger animals that have less to choose from during that season.
What do Pheasants eat?
Pheasants are omnivorous and like many birds eat plants, insects, seeds, worms, berries, and small reptiles. Males are considered roosters and females, hens when talking about reproduction. They will flock together with up to 7 birds. Hens will lay on average 12 eggs, but up to 20 and have several “broods” per year. Incubation lasts 23 days and the mother cares for its young until they are capable around 2 weeks of age. This is when they have learned to fly.
Pheasants In Captivity
Pheasant is living in 40 of our American states and is raised by over 100 farms. The populations farmed are released by individuals, clubs, and government agencies to satisfy the needs of hunters. There is a lot of information for farming Pheasant and caring for it, which makes it an ideal choice for farming. One main point made by the information available is to give the chicks a comfortable and healthy lifestyle, in hopes they grow to maturity rather than dying from stress. Problems among birds or overpopulation of a pen are easy to spot and solve.