Completely new to pheasants

Discussion in 'Pheasants and Partridge (Chukar)' started by The Chickeneer, Apr 4, 2012.

  1. The Chickeneer

    The Chickeneer ~A Morning's Crow~

    So I bought a male and female ringneck pheasant. I've always wanted some, seen them at the swap meets but they were always expensive and looked beat up.
    Then I saw some at the feed store while I was buying chicken feed, the were beautiful, and both together were only $35! I saw that as a pretty good deal.
    So........I have some questions.........

    Do they sleep on the floor or on roosts? I assumed it was on roosts like my chickens, but they've been sleeping on the floor lately (they're in a separate pen that the chickens just so you know)
    What specifically do they eat? I thought a mix of game feed and chicken scratch would be good enough, but do they need free range food as well? Are they leftover eaters like chickens?

    Oh, and whenever i grab them, they are kind of skittish so they flap around allot and they leave a bunch of feathers everywhere. I'ts like picking up a ripped bag full of fluff and it all falls out. But when you looked at them, they seem untouched and like they never lost any feathers when you grabbed them. If I was to walk up and see the coop, I could have thought a predator got them or something, there are just feathers every where, and i'm not exaggerating. Is this like their molting season or something? Are they sick?

    Could i eventually let them free range with chickens and expect them to return to the roosts at night? or are pheasants the run away type?

    Thanks for any info and additional advice
     
  2. ranit

    ranit Chillin' With My Peeps

    344
    7
    111
    Apr 14, 2010
    Illinois
    Some of mine like to sleep on the roost and others sleep on the ground.

    Gamebird feed is formulated with all they need. Go sparingly on the treats. A handful of scratch now and then will not hurt but does not have all the nutrients they need - it's kinda like kids and candy - too much and they won't eat what they should. I do like to throw a handful of grass clippings in with mine when I mow since they keep the pen pecked clean.

    They tend to have a response system that releases feathers when grabbed. This helps them escape from predators in the wild.

    No they will not free range and come home at night. Once turned loose they are usually gone. Sometimes they will stay around for awhile but eventually take off.
     
  3. fancyfowl4ever

    fancyfowl4ever Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,283
    16
    181
    Mar 17, 2008
    Cranbrook, BC, Canada
     
  4. The Chickeneer

    The Chickeneer ~A Morning's Crow~

    Thanks for all the answers. I really wish I could free range them........Can you clip their wings? Or do they just jump over things just as easy?
    If not, guess I might just build them a run with the top covered with wire.
     
  5. bigtim68

    bigtim68 New Egg

    6
    0
    7
    Aug 29, 2010
    I have 4 Ringnecks, 1 rooster and 3 hens theyre 11mos today, i got them when they were 5 days old, they are still wild birds and dont like humans around much. i can go into their enclosure and they still run from me, although they dont freak out and go crazy like when a neighbor and or friends come by to look at them, some roost all night and some sleep on the ground, i feed them gamebird feed and a couple of times a week i throw in wild bird seed and meal worms which they love, they'll eat bread, apples and grass clippings and i get a bale of hay and scatter it around and they like that too, i've collected a dozen eggs from them and in 6 more days ill know if they were fertile, as theyre in a 12 egg incubator i bought for $150. new, which turn the eggs and keep humidity up .

    Tim

    ps feel free to write me anytime[​IMG]
     
  6. fancyfowl4ever

    fancyfowl4ever Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,283
    16
    181
    Mar 17, 2008
    Cranbrook, BC, Canada
    Pheasants should always have a covered enclosure, both for keeping them in and keeping owl etc out(they just love gamebirds).
    Clipping has never done any good with my pheasants other then it slowed down the male a bit when he gets to agressive in breeding season and I clip him and not the hen(so she can avoid him better).
    They can still jump and climb wire with clipped wings.
     
  7. The Chickeneer

    The Chickeneer ~A Morning's Crow~

    Thanks guys, Okay, I have them in a temporary little chicken coop until i can get their pen built. They do seem pretty skittish still, but I figured out a way to catch them easily. I just walk slowly toward them, stand over them so they cant fly, and just grab 'em real fast. And when should the female pheasant start laying eggs? the temporary coop I have them in right now has a nest box in it, I've seen her in it a couple times, no eggs though. I guess shes just exploring it first, like the pullets used to do before they started laying. And how long do their eggs store before incubation?
     
  8. amandashahan

    amandashahan New Egg

    3
    0
    7
    May 6, 2012
    I hope you got everything worked out! :)
     
    Last edited: May 20, 2012

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by