Ring-necked Pheasant: Large chicken-like pheasant; metallic-brown body, iridescent green head, white neck ring, red eye patch and wattles; tail long and pointed. Sub-species identified by male plumage; white wing coverts in mongolicus group, with coppery upperparts, and in chrysomelas/principalis group, with orange or yellow on upperparts. Brown or buff wing coverts in the other groups; colchicus group has red-brown rump; tarimensis group has yellow cast on green rump; torquatus group has gray or blue on green rump. Female pale brown with dark markings; shorter tail; lacks wattle.
Range and Habitat
Ring-necked Pheasant: Native to Asia; found from southern British Columbia, Alberta, Minnesota, Ontario, and Maritime Provinces south to central California, the Midwest states, northern Texas, and the mid-Atlantic states. Preferred habitats include farmlands, pastures, and grassy woodland edges. Declining in parts of its eastern range.
Breeding and Nesting
Ring-necked Pheasant: Ten to twelve dark green buff or brown olive eggs are laid in a grass-lined ground depression concealed in dense grass or weeds. Incubation ranges from 23 to 25 days and is carried out by the female.
Foraging and Feeding
Ring-necked Pheasant: Their diet includes grasses, leaves, roots, wild fruits and nuts, insects, waste grain, seeds and plant parts. In spring and summer, insects and other arthropods are important foods, especially for chicks. They forage mostly on the ground by scratching and grazing. They take food primarily on the ground, by scratching or digging with their bill.
Berries, Cracked Corn, Millet
Ring-necked Pheasant: Makes a loud, crowing "caw-cawk" followed by a resonant beating of the wings. When alarmed, flies off with a loud cackle.
Ring-necked Pheasant: Male is unmistakable. Female Sharp-tailed Grouse is shorter-necked, has a slight crest, white outer tail feathers, shorter tail, and feathered legs. Female Sage Grouse has dark belly patch and feathered legs.