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Posts Tagged ‘ring-necked pheasant’

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A pretty amazing painting by Scot Storm:

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From Country Life Illustrated (27 November 1897)

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This bird is a melanistic common or ring-necked pheasant (Phasianus colchicus). This is a hen pheasant.

She’s much darker brown and has more black on her plumage than a typical hen of this species. She’s not really as black as one might expect a melanistic animal to be.

A typical hen pheasant for comparison.

The cock melanistic pheasants are really black.  Well, they are black in that their whole bodies are the same color as a typical cock pheasant’s head– black with a greenish sheen.

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The pheasants are stocked, but the bobwhites are native.  And this Brittany’s game is on.

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This is from a Kentucky PBS show called Kentucky Afield, which is a hunting, fishing, and conservation show– with its own Youtube channel. It’s where the Turtleman go his start!

Adam Edelen was Governor Steve Beshear’s chief of staff at the time this footage was taken.  He was elected State Auditor in last week’s election.

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These two species are actually quite closely related, so it would make sense that the males would fight each other. Of course, the body language is a bit different, and the rooster has the ability to make displays the cock pheasant cannot.

There are actual hybrids between ring-necked pheasants and domestic fowl, so maybe this rooster had something to worry about.

I don’t think these hybrids occur unless chickens and pheasants are raised together, so I wouldn’t worry about wild pheasants breeding with your hens.

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This is what they normally look like:

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There are many different subspecies of Phasianus colchicus. The East Asian and some of Central Asian races tend to have rings around their necks.

The Caucasian races were the first introduced to Western Europe, and in Europe, it is not uncommon to find common pheasants roosters that lack rings around their necks.

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One Tame Pheasant!

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These birds, even if raised in captivity, are normally so wild and nervous that you can never get close to them.

This is one strange bird.

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