Pheasants in the Garden
Large, colourful birds who eat anything (almost!).
Photo 'The male Pheasant': '© Down the Lane
Pheasants are one of the largest birds to visit our Gardens and when they do it's a sight to behold, especially the male when showing his grand colour and walking with an air of authority.
They are however quite hard to get up close to and will scamper off in a quick zig zag walk making little clucky noises along the way.
They love strolling around overgrowth and quite a few times I've had a pleasant stroll around the wasteland surrounding my house only to nearly have a heart attack due to one suddenly flying out with accompanied shriek!
Photo 'The Female Pheasant': '© Down the Lane
Needless to say they are hunted through the legal times of the year and in rural parts it's not uncommon to go into a shed and find one or two hanging up ready for plucking. Although I'm not 100% behind the hunting, at least they have had a free life in the open rather than farmed in cages for cheapness sake.
The female pheasant is much more shy and in the years I've been down the Lane I've never seen one in the Garden, whereas the males, I've often found them in the Chicken Run mixing in quite well amidst the Hens (who don't seem that bothered!).
Their main diet consists of foraged foods such as berries, seeds, grass etc. My Lawn around the Bird Feeders is their favourite place here. They will gladly participate in anything we've thrown out for our smaller garden bird friends but always go back to scavenging around the grass.
They nest in hedges or longer grass, they will have more than one female partner and defend their 'rights' with vigor.
Breeding starts in Spring, around April and the babies are born some 24 days later.