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Phasianus colchicus (L.)
Aves, Galliforma, Phasianidae .

Pheasant

Description, Biology, Life Cycle, Damage, Common Names, Images


[R]Description
- Male: 76-89 cm long; feathers many-coloured; tail pointed and long; head dark green or shiny blue; white stripe sometimes surrounding the neck; skin around eyes and short "ears" scarlet (*) .
Female: 55-64 cm long; tail much shorter than that of male; feathers brown to yellowish-brown, mottled or striped with black (*) .

[R]Biology
- This species originates from the Caucasus and was introduced as a game-bird into Europe, North Africa, New Zealand and North America.
- Pheasants are sedentary and polygynous birds inhabiting scrubland.
- Number of eggs per clutch: about 16 (*) .
- Duration of development until hatching: 23-24 days.

[R]Life Cycle
Breeding takes place in the spring, egg-laying occurring in simple nests situated on the ground, in protected areas, for example under bushes. Young birds grow during the summer (*) .
Pheasants feed on plants, slugs, snails and insects.
This species causes damage to maize or wheat but is also a predator of certain pests such as caterpillars, soil-inhabiting larvae, weevils and slugs.

[R]Damage
Pheasants unearth and feed on newly sowen seeds as well as on young plantlets, whose hypocotyl they devour.
Damage is caused mainly to cereals, maize, red beet and sugar beet. Even quite old maize seedlings having reached the 4th tor 6th leaf stage are pulled up by the pheasants, which can thus reach the seeds. Plants later dessicate and die.
This species also attacks cabbage and sometimes vine and strawberry.
Pheasant numbers may be greatly reduced by hunting. Pelleting of seeds (Ziram, Thiram) or the use of certain pesticides (Diazinon, Mercaptodimethur) make seeds unpalatablea. However, seedlings are insufficiently protected. Food may be distributed to deter these birds from feeding in vulnerable areas. This task is within the competence of hunters, who are financially responsible for the depredations caused by this bird.

[R]Remark/A>
In Germany, pheasants cause severe damage, especially to maize. In the case of monogerm seeds, even unimportant attacks on sowen seeds or on seedlings lead to a decrease in yield. In autumn, this species also feeds on the ears of dwarf cultivars.


[R]Common Names
DE: Fasan, Jagdfasan ES: Faisán FR: Faisan IT: Faggiano PT: Faisão GB: Pheasant

[R] Images

  1. Phasianus colchicus (L.) (Cattiau G. / INRA)
    Young
  2. Phasianus colchicus (L.) (Barbier L. / ONC)
    Male
  3. Phasianus colchicus (L.) (Midoux E. / ONC)
    Nest and eggs
  4. Phasianus colchicus (L.) (Barbier L. / ONC)
    Female

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HYPPZ on line : Species (scientific name), Pests (common names), Glossary, Crops.

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