[CT Birds] More on Pheasants

Dennis Varza dennisvz at optonline.net
Fri Mar 12 08:42:28 EST 2010

Hi folks,

First off thanks for the information on pheasants. it gave me food  
for thought. Keep the information coming.

The nature of the Ring-necked Pheasant is to be relatively sedentary.  
Also, except for early spring when males are calling, they are rather  
secretive, being seen by chance. So, to get a measure the occurrence  
of the species in an area takes a lot of time. As a consequence I  
believe that no one person has an understanding the species state  
wide. Lacking specific surveys, by gathering together many personal  
observations and opinions we should be able to get a better handle on  
this species.

The status of the species in the state is a continuum, not a yes or  
no for a breeding population. Some area may have self sustaining  
breeding populations, some may have breeding birds supplemented  
annually with released birds, and some may be entirely released  
birds. Also, the species prefers fields, and over the past 50 years  
there has been a general decline in this habitat. Therefore one would  
expect a decline in the breeding population.

To get a handle on this situation I would like to make a map of  
observed distribution of pheasants by birders. This would include  
length of time (years)  the birds have been present and any  
indication of reproduction. I have a contact in the state from whom I  
hope to make a map of the distribution of release sites of the  
species. By comparing these two maps we should be able to get a  
likelihood for different regions. Obviously, we can not know for sure  
about all populations but I think we can make it less fuzzy.

Here is a thought for the listers. If there is only one breeding  
population in the state, does that allow for any pheasant to be  
counted, or only those birds that breed? Or, is one population  
sufficient to count the species as established?

So, Keep sending me your locations and  impressions of pheasants.

Dennis Varza

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