The Travels of Tug 44

Ring-Necked Pheasant

Ring-Necked Pheasants are of extreme interest for hunters, so the State of New York pays farmers to raise them for release into the wild. This is paid for by hunting license fees, and NY releases about 30,000 Pheasants each year. This one is a male, the females are mostly dull brown.   high-res

Ring-Necked Pheasants eat mostly grain, seeds and bugs. When you see one run forward about 3 feet and then stop, another bug has been caught. Pheasants don't fly much, they prefer to run from people and predators, which they can do amazingly fast.   high-res

These two male Ring-Necked Pheasants are out in the middle of a country road in Fort Edward. They are confused, having never seen a road before their release just a day or two ago. Later they will learn that during winter, when seeds are snow-covered and bugs are not available ... seeds will collect on the sides of cleared roads in small drifts.   high-res

Eventually the two male Pheasants got the idea and ran for the grass and off the road. They will never really learn to deal with cars very well.   high-res

The State also releases female Ring-Necked Pheasants. This one was dropped off a day or two earlier, and she also is not familiar with cars and people and the danger they represent.   high-res

This female Ring-Necked Pheasant pauses by the side of the road after she tried several times to cross but nearly got run over each time. Usually they look both ways and then run right out into traffic anyway. Yeah, they're not that bright. It was amazing to watch her run across the hay field, she runs about 20 mph ... faster than some birds fly.   high-res

The Ring-Necked Pheasant, one of the prettiest birds out there.

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