nature, pheasants, photography, wildlife, WPC

Of pheasants rocketing up with long tails – WPC Boundaries

Rooster 1

In response to The Daily Post’s weekly photo challenge: “Boundaries.”

This ring-necked pheasant on our bird farm is wearing a “peeper.”  It’s a small,plastic device he wears in his beak to limit his forward vision so he doesn’t peck out the feathers or eyes of his fellow pheasants.  Without peepers, captive pheasants will literally peck each other to death.  It ain’t pretty.

In about three weeks, this rooster will shed his ocular boundary and and be freed from the physical boundaries of his pen, released to the wild.  He will supplement wild bird populations, provide hunting opportunity and add a beautiful splash of color to our otherwise drab landscape.

“Even his sleep was full of dreams.  He dreamt as he had not dreamt since the old days at Three Mile Cross — of hares starting from the long grass; of pheasants rocketing up with long tails streaming, of partridges rising with a whirr from the stubble.  He dreamt that he was hunting, that he was chasing some spotted spaniel, who fled, who escaped him.”  Virginia Woolf

Teresa

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9 thoughts on “Of pheasants rocketing up with long tails – WPC Boundaries”

  1. A large part of my life was spent in rural Iowa where these birds abounded. They were so commonly seen in the ditches and edges of fields. The first week of driving my first new car a pheasant started up from the ditch, as they quite often did, and took out my right headline. He was magnificent but he did not survive.

    We do not see pheasant any more. I’m sure it’s loss of habitat as well as growth in predator numbers. I am glad you are restocking this lovely bird.

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    1. Wyoming does not have pheasant numbers like in Iowa or the Dakotas. We simply don’t have the habitat in large enough quantity to support them. d he But we have small populations of wild pheasants that are supplemented by captive raised pheasants released into the wild. Without the influx of captive birds, I don’t think the wild populations would last very long, given their vulnerability to predators and hunting pressure.

      I watched a driver hit a wild goose one time. She was a few cars ahead of me and all I saw was a giant cloud of feathers errupt on the highway. Not pretty for either her tiny car, or the goose! I’d imagine a pheasant would make a decent mess, too.

      Thanks for stopping by my blog and for the comments. I love hearing about wildlife and wild encounters from all over!

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    1. I didn’t either, until my husband took a job raising captive pheasants. Before they are old enough for the peepers, they beat each other up pretty bad. Survival of the fittest can be sort of ugly! Thanks for stopping by!

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  2. Cool capture. Had no idea pheasants could be so nasty. On the other hand, in a bald eagle battle here last week one of the birds attacked the other right in the eyes and the poor thing had to be euthanized. So perhaps birds instinctively go for the eyes as most vulnerable.

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    1. I can’t even imagine what a bald eagle fight would look like. I joke about “wailing and gnashing of beaks” with our birds, but it would be nothing compared to a fight between birds of prey! Yikes!

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  3. Teresa, We at North Dakota State University are writing a publication on raising pheasants and need a photo of a pheasant with the plastic blinders for the cannibalism section. Can we use your picture showing the rooster with the plastic binder attached? It would make a nice visual of the publication. I can email you the publication for viewing and give full photo credit to the photographer. Thanks

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    1. Certainly, Kevin! I’m glad to help, and flattered you like the photo! I will e-mail the original photo to you, as it will be a better resolution than the one from the web and should reproduce well.

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