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Common Pheasant

Phasianus colchicus (Linnaeus, 1758)

Обыкновенный фазан | Қырғауыл
male

2007-04-26
Sarybulak, Enbekshikazakh region, Almaty oblast
© Askar Isabekov

Distribution

Resident of riparian forests of South-Eastern Kazakhstan, and also in Syrdarya vallay and in Northern Trans-Caspain area. Please see the detailed distribution in the section Subspecies.

Biology

Common, in places rare resident. Inhabits riparian forests and reed-beds with thick bush cover on or near rivers and lakes in steppe regions, and deciduous forest with overrun unkempt thickets and dense undergrowth in mountain foothills up to 1800 m; in 2003 recorded in Bolshoye Almatinskoye lake, 2500 m. Males begin to utter mating call in February, but mostly in March. Each male “goes for it” and may attract on his territory several females. Nest is built under a bush or grass on ground from grass leaves. Clutches of 8-24 eggs laid in April – mid-June. Often breeding repeated if nest lost. Female incubates some 22-26 days and cares for chicks, which usually hatch towards the end of May – mid-June. Live in flocks (up to more than one hundred birds) in Autumn and Winter, and sometimes disperse, up to 200 km away from breeding grounds.

Subspecies

Phasianus colchicus turcestanicus (Lorenz, 1896)

    Description. Back, especially upper back, rather intensive coppery-red colour with weak green shine. Feathers on crop and upper breast with purple shade and usually without black terminal borders or they are poorly developed. White collar usually not closed in front. Rump and upper tail coverts more intensively red, head less bronze-green, back with less developed green shade than mongolicus.
    Distribution. Breeding on Syrdarya valley.

Phasianus colchicus mongolicus (Brandt, 1845)

    Description. Back, especially upper back, rather intensive rich coppery-red colour with well developed green shade. Feathers on crop and upper breast with green shade and usually with underdeveloped, sometimes absent, pattern formed by black terminal borders. Rump and upper tail coverts less red, head more bronze-green, back with more developed green shade than turcestanicus. White collar usually not closed in front, but better developed than turcestanicus.
    Distribution. Breeding in Chu river valley, at Balkhash-Alakol and Zaysan depressions, where recorded in middle of XIX century, and not spotted again until its reintroduction to the area in 1983. Over the last few years, settles in West (Chu-Iliyskiye Mts., Zhetyzhol ridge) and in 1998 reappeared at Chokpak Pass and upper reaches of Arys river (basin of Syrdarya river), where it is becoming common.

Phasianus colchicus septentrionalis (Lorenz, 1888)

    Description. General colour lighter, more golden, less purple shade than nominate race. On back black streaks, greenish shade prevails on crop and flank. Dark colour of upper belly limited to green colour. Throat, sides of neck and rump more greenish. Upper tail coverts with greenish shade. White collar absent.
    Distribution. Previously breed on coasts of Northern Caspian Sea, disappeared from Ural river delta in middle XIX century. Recent years occurs in the Kazakhstan part of the Northern Caspian adjacent to the Volga Delta; a local hunter shot two females mid-October 1999 near Zaburunye close to Atyrau.

References

"Птицы Казахстана" том 2. Алма-Ата, 1962. Gavrilov E. I., Gavrilov A. E. "The Birds of Kazakhstan". Almaty, 2005. Э.И.Гаврилов. "Фауна и распространение птиц Казахстана". Алматы, 1999.

supplement

subspecies

Phasianus colchicus turcestanicus
(Lorenz, 1896)
information gallery
Phasianus colchicus mongolicus
(Brandt, 1845)
information gallery
Phasianus colchicus septentrionalis
(Lorenz, 1888)
information gallery

other names

Кавказский фазан

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