My friend the pheasant
The year has been the year of the pheasant in my garden. Almost every day, my friend the pheasant is somewhere around and I’m really surprised that he’s not afraid of being quite close to me as I do my work. Obviously, he understands that I’m not a threat and just continues on with his search for food. The following four photos are the best shots I’ve been able to take of him. Such a beautiful bird. Click on them to see them full size.
In previous years it has been foxes that I’ve seen very regularly, but I haven’t seen any foxes at all this year (probably a good thing for my friend the pheasant). I’ve seen pheasants around every year (see my post from last year – Pleasant Pheasants) but nowhere near as much as I’m seeing my pheasant friends this year. The other animals that seems to be on the rise this year are rabbits, at least in my garden.
The male pheasant has a particularly distinctive cry that is becoming very familiar to me, and I managed to capture it on this video. The video also shows how they walk and move.
It’s interesting how he flaps his wings immediately after making his cry. In fact, when he is really startled by a dog or something like that, he makes the same cry and takes to the wing. They can actually fly pretty well, up and over the hedges into the next garden for example, and he keeps making the same cry for the whole of the flight. So, in some way, these male pheasants use the cry to inform the other pheasants where they are, as well as a warning that there is something dangerous nearby.
I snapped the following photo of my friend the pheasant dawdling through my garden one day while I was working there. He’s really not very far from me here and isn’t concerned at all.
Sometimes Mr. Pheasant is accompanied by Mrs. Pheasant and both of them seem completely relaxed with me around and quite close. The female pheasant is quite boring colour-wise compared to the male. The two photos below show them together. In the first, the couple were in my way and I just had to wait until they moved, because I didn’t want to be threatening towards them. In the second photo, they were taking advantage of a water bowl I’d set up near the greenhouse. This is actually a bowl that Gloria made in our pottery studio, but it had a crack in the rim so it’s now serving water to the bird life around the garden. It’s a very beautiful bowl, rather posh for the birds – pity about the crack.
Carrying on with the pottery theme, Gloria made me lovely oval bowl for my birthday and she commemorated it with an image of my friend the pheasant. This is a beautiful bowl and a great idea. Something for me to treasure. I’ll always remember how this year was the year of the pheasant in our garden.