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Ring-necked Pheasant

ID Info
Silhouette Game BirdsGame Birds
Ring-necked PheasantPhasianus colchicus
  • ORDER: Galliformes
  • FAMILY: Phasianidae

Basic Description

Ring-necked Pheasants stride across open fields and weedy roadsides in the U.S. and southern Canada. Males sport iridescent copper-and-gold plumage, a red face, and a crisp white collar; their rooster-like crowing can be heard from up to a mile away. The brown females blend in with their field habitat. Introduced to the U.S. from Asia in the 1880s, pheasants quickly became one of North America’s most popular upland game birds. Watch for them along roads or bursting into flight from brushy cover.

More ID Info
image of range map for Ring-necked Pheasant
Range map provided by Birds of the World
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Find This Bird

Because they live in tall vegetation and old fields, Ring-necked Pheasants can be hard to see even in places where they’re numerous. Keep an eye out for them running between patches of cover as you travel through agricultural areas—particularly along dirt roads where the birds often forage in weedy areas. Winter is a good time to look for Ring-necked Pheasants, when vegetation is at a minimum, crops have been harvested, and some areas have a snowy backdrop for the birds to stand out against. In spring and summer, listen and watch for males performing their calling and wing-flapping display in open areas.

Other Names

  • Faisán Vulgar (Spanish)
  • Faisan de Colchide (French)

Backyard Tips

This species often comes to ground-based bird feeders. Find out more about what this bird likes to eat by using the Project FeederWatch Common Feeder Birds tool.

  • Cool Facts