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Golden Pheasants??? - Page 2

post #11 of 14
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by Kev 

Goldens can be free ranged. I've done it,  they kind of walk over a larger area than the chickens do, and easily jump fences(fences really are not a barrier to them, more like a high skip and they are on the other side in an instant..) but they always showed up at feeding time, some roosted in trees in my yard, never found out where others roosted..

I quit trying that though as the hawks would always hit the hens and juvenile males(before they got the color) REAL bad when they were migrating through or staying for winter.  Those same hawks did not touch chickens or the adult golden roosters, just rapid fired on the golden hens and juvenile males only. My guess they resemble their natural or familiar prey from other areas they hunt in.

They also were very tame, which was a good thing as many (chicken)hens or roosters liked to give them a real hard time at feeding time so I was forced to feed them on top of things and stand guard so they could at least get some feed.

Was quite awesome to see the golden roosters show behavior I don't ever get to see them do in a pen(and my pens for the breeders were 10' x 60'..) such as the males bowing their head to the ground, beak mere millimeters from the ground then raising their body and tail almost straight up and running directly at a hen  20 feet or more from him. That looks so odd. Also all of them act much like monkeys when in trees- running around and scrambling easily even on the thin branches.   I miss them.

Anyways, my vote is "probably not" due to hawks, even if they never bother your chickens. And then you probably will need to make some kind of accommodation so the goldens would have access to feed if the hens like to chase them off at feeding time.

Kept in covered pens, they are extremely easy to care for.. especially if not made to live with other species in the same enclosure.

By the way, on second reading, you asked about friendliness..  yes they can become extremely friendly.  Both the parent raiseds and brooder raised birds easily became tame enough to take feed from hands,  if you are patient or calm,  it is easy to get them used to you enough to jump up on your lap or arm with a treat or food in your hands- several of the hens "taught" themselves to fly onto my shoulder or arms for food or treats. The adult males usually are too busy posturing at anything close by so the most they did usually was take a few bites and then go back to contorting their bodies at something..

Thanks all for the great info.

Maybe I will think about the covered pen, as hubby realy does have his heart set on them. We will see tho.

Will have to give the idea some thought.


I am so clever that sometimes I don't understand a single word of what I am saying. ~ Oscar Wilde
"The best thing about animals is that they don't talk much." ~ Thornton Wilder

I am so clever that sometimes I don't understand a single word of what I am saying. ~ Oscar Wilde
"The best thing about animals is that they don't talk much." ~ Thornton Wilder
post #12 of 14

I couldn't grow stuff in some parts of my yard either.  What I used were whole tree branches put around in creative ways..  some were screwed to 2 x 4's so they stuck out into space, kinda like a true branch.. others were just propped up against walls or a couple were put together like a teepee (thick part sticking up so the leafy parts are down at the bird's walking level). Many of the pheasants absolutely loved the entire tree branches, a lot of nests were made in those.

I didn't do this but you could use potted plants. Just plunk them on ground or dig whatever depth you can and like partially bury the pot with plant with it to hide some of the pot.. also this will be good for the plant- their roots will grow out into the soil.

I did use empty nursery pots, 15 gal or larger and cut out a hole in the sides and then screwed them against a post or directly on a 2 x 4 and then put couple inches soil on the bottom of pot then stuffed leaves, pine needles, straw or whatever's handy then put a spare piece of plywood on top, or put part of a branch on top. Some hens used this and never nested anywhere, golden hens seemed very partial to those. Most of them also went broody and hatched chicks.. which back then unknown to me apparently that does not happen too often.. surprised me because nearly all of them went broody and raised chicks. It is amazing how much better the chicks look when raised by a hen. Much smoother feathers and much more muscular. If the hen is tame, she will teach the chicks not to be afraid of you. It is quite charming to reach out a hand full of food or treats and have a "wild pheasant bird" come right up to you with her babies and all of them make little noises and fuss over which specific tidbit they want out of your hand.. tossing some off to the side.. some off on the other side of hand. Heh. (Like I said, I miss them.)

Not as "pretty"  but spare pieces of plywood are quite accepted and used by the birds. Just lean them over onto a wall. Make sure you don't set them where a bird could get cornered by another bird though, making sure there are two exit holes for each one, so to speak. You could paint them to make them more appealing, as in for you or human eyes, the birds do not care if they are plain brown or pretty green with natural murals painted on them..

Since then I have discovered the heaven that is covered cat litter boxes, which I use for chicken nestboxes. I absolutely would have used them for the pheasants- propped up on a shelf, or with the bottom half screwed on a 2 x 4 like I did the nursery pots etc. Most of them are pretty shiny or gaudy colored so I would try painting them to make them less "eye-soreish" especially if they are going to be at eye level or higher. (oops forgot to mention the pot nests were at head or higher level.. they love this) I would suggest to maybe make the nests a little hard to access so other birds don't have such an easy viewing and bothering access, just in case. I faced the enterance just a bit slightly off to the side, so the hen would have to do a little monkey gymnastics to get in(they are very agile, trust me).. or make it just a few feet away from a wall and the enterance faces the wall also.

Geez this is getting too long..  hope this gave some ideas!

post #13 of 14

Critter Crazy,

If you have some landscaping skill or love to have some plants but the chickens keep destroying them,  that can be an excuse to make a big covered run, landscape it then keep only a pair(or few) goldens in it..  generally they are not as hard on plants as chickens are. Of course the smaller the run, the more likely you are going to see "nibbled to a nub" plants. 

It would be absolutely grand to make sort of like a patio-garden thing, maybe with an actual patio with seating area and then surrounding it is landscaping and the fence are natural posts and black netting over(black has some effect of making netting and wire look invisible). Probably would end up being pricey but can you imagine how pretty that would be, especially with a pair of goldens in it? Make you feel better about keeping them contained also maybe..

In any case.. even a simple rectangular pen can look beautiful if it's made as large as possible so it can be well planted and not suffer bird damage, it can look almost natural that way.. the birds will like it very much. My pens were bare dirt- it's desert out here, so..  they were very happy with cut tree branches, so a run with grass and planted or potted plants would make them just as happy or even happier.. And for you, it will be a feast for your eyes, the colors, patterns and textures on them are quite something and on top of them their behavior!

post #14 of 14

We have a pair of Golden Pheasants they are kept in a run (PS with live in Scotland). We are planning to tame them up and let them be free range or get there eggs and hatch them under one of our silkies or pekin bantams.

So I would Hatch one under a bantam or a heavy weight chicken.

We might be able to sell you some eggs.

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