Wednesday, 6 February 2013

Japanese National Bird - Green Pheasant

Pheasants are among the most brightly colored group of birds in the world. Of the 11 genera there are 35 species of pheasants. They are the most colorful species. Males are much more colorful than females.

The Green Pheasant, with scientific name Phasianus versicolor, also known as Japanese Pheasant, is native to the Japanese Archipelago, to which it is endemic. The male (cock) is distinguished from that species by its dark green plumage on the breast and mantle. The male also has an iridescent violet neck, red bare facial skin and purplish green tail. The female is smaller than male and has a dull brown plumage with dark spots.

Interesting Facts About Green Pheasant

  1. The male Green Pheasant is quite unique for its distinctive dark green plumage, violet neck, red face and purple-green tail.
  2. The colorful Green Pheasant is endemic to Japan and is the "national bird" of Japan. It is also informally called Japanese Pheasant.
  3. Green Pheasants are still common in Japan and is the most popular game bird in that country. Laws forbit the release of Phasianus colchicus in most areas of Japan. The Green Pheasant rarely comes into contact with Japan's other endemic pheasant, the Copper Pheasant, but there have been a few reports of hybrids in the wild. 
  4. Summer brings many threats to young pheasants, and approximately 35 percent of the chicks die in the first 6 to 10 weeks following hatching.
  5. Hens will adopt strays or chicks who have lost their own mothers, and a hen with young of two or more age groups is not uncommon.
  6. In late summer and early fall, pheasants are often found in areas where they are likely to find a good source of insects and greens.
  7. Adult roosters molt in late July and early August and become quite secretive. Until their new feathers have grown, they are seldom seen.
  8. As fall approaches, pheasants disband as family groups, and young pheasants begin to assert their independence
  9. It is the national bird of Japan.