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Strange Colured Pheasant (5 Viewers)

Trilogy82

Active member
Ireland
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First off, apologies for the image quality - it was taken with a phone through binoculars!

I spotted this guy today at a wetland reserve and the colouring struck me as being unusual. He was a much lighter colour than a typical pheasant, similar to a golden cocker spaniel. The head colour was also unusual in that the dark shimmer green was almost totally substituted for a slightly dark shade of the brown body colour.

My initial thoughts were that this was captive bred escapee but this isn't really based on anything other than a guess.

Could this colouring down to a genetic anomaly, hybridisation or something else? Or is there anything stage about it at all!
 
Could you give the location and date, please? Thanks.
Assuming it's somewhere artificially stocked with common pheasant... They come in all sorts of colours these days (far more so than they used to), especially dark ones - so no particular colour would surprise me much. Note that every common pheasant you see is effectively a 'captive-bred escape'.
 
I've read somewhere that every year the number of Pheasants in the UK (I don't know about Ireland) is around 5 million before the hunting season and then, when it begins, an additional 50 million of them are released into the wild by breeders (most of which meet a rather sad fate since there are only about 5 million of them left after a year). Apart from that, I hope this helps with regard to colour morphs (from Robert Hume's 'RSPB Birds of Britain and Europe'):
 

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I must admit having been brought up in a pheasant and grouse moor area I opened this thread wondering what constitutes a strange coloured pheasant, given the huge variety I would see on a regular basis!
 
Could you give the location and date, please? Thanks.
Assuming it's somewhere artificially stocked with common pheasant... They come in all sorts of colours these days (far more so than they used to), especially dark ones - so no particular colour would surprise me much. Note that every common pheasant you see is effectively a 'captive-bred escape'.
It was taken yesterday at the Cabragh Wetlands Reserve near Thurles in Co Tipperary.
 
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