Originally from Asia, pheasants can be bred in captivity and have been introduced in many countries, including the United States, as a gamebird. The Romans were some of the first to introduce it to Europe. It’s very popular in Great Britain.
In fall and winter, pheasants eat grain and other seeds, leaves, roots, berries, nuts, and some insects. Like other gallinaceous (chickenlike) birds, they mostly feed on the ground, scratching, digging, and pecking as they forage.
Pheasants and their relatives evade predators by making sudden, explosive bursts of flight. Their short, blunt, deeply cupped wings are perfect for short, quick distances. Their wing shape and flying muscles are inefficient for long flights.
MDC protects and manages Missouri's fish, forest, and wildlife resources. We also facilitate your participation in resource-management activities, and we provide opportunities for you to use, enjoy and learn about nature. Read more about our mission.