Three month old pheasant: male or female?

Male or female?

  • Male

  • Female


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RebbyB

Hatching
Oct 16, 2021
7
4
9
This summer we found and ended up raising an abandoned pheasant chick that was roaming around our garden with no parents in sight for hours and hours. We think "he" may be male, but we're still a bit unsure.
He will be 14 weeks old on Monday, and is doing pretty well. He was tiny when we found him, so probably only a day or two old at the most. He'd been peeping in our garden for hours and we left him alone but as night came we took him in before he was caught by something.
He started in a chicken run, coming into the house in a box at night, then later he just came in and slept in the conservatory at night. He is now free/loose outside foraging independently all day during the daytime. He flies and forages (especially spiders!) pretty well, but we supplement his diet ourselves too. I bought a huge bag of pheasant feed when we first were trying out foods for him, and he totally rejected it (think he'd got too used to me catching insects for him, then feeding him live mealworms...) so that's sat in the garage untouched! Instead I've been buying live mealworms, which he loves (and cost a lot!) along with seeds/grain, and now he enjoys peanuts.
The first two photos are of when we found him 14 weeks ago (12th July), and the third photo is what (s)he looks like now. Do any of you think you can tell from the final photo whether "Peep" is a male or female?
PeepBaby1.jpg
PeepBaby2.jpg
Peep12Weeks.jpg
 

RebbyB

Hatching
Oct 16, 2021
7
4
9
How can you tell? I thought the prominent red around the eye was suggesting male, and the fact some feathers look a little reddish in colour - but I'm interested to know if there are better means of telling at this age! Thanks in advance.
 

katelwil

Songster
Apr 16, 2021
260
577
191
I'm definitely not a pheasant expert but I agree, definitely looks like a hen. In my experience the males are a lot more colorful, but maybe it varies by breed? We have pheasants and the male we have looks drastically different than the female.
 

RebbyB

Hatching
Oct 16, 2021
7
4
9
This is a close up of the feathers on Peep's back - would a female have those ones with such a reddish-brown colour?
 

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RebbyB

Hatching
Oct 16, 2021
7
4
9
I'm definitely not a pheasant expert but I agree, definitely looks like a hen. In my experience the males are a lot more colorful, but maybe it varies by breed? We have pheasants and the male we have looks drastically different than the female.
How early / what age were you able to tell with such striking differences? This one is three months old now. Has quite a bold personality and can get a bit aggressive at times around food etc even though (s) he's really tame. I'm happy to be wrong and it be a female - this is the first pheasant chick I've ever encountered so I'm a total amateur and learning as I go!
 
Last edited:

RebbyB

Hatching
Oct 16, 2021
7
4
9

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