Do Pheasants Make Good Pets?

Common Pheasant

Highlights: Keeping Pheasants as Pets

  • Pheasants have lived close to humans for centuries but are not ⁢domesticated in the strict sense; taming them requires time and patience.
  • Young pheasants are easier ​to tame,‌ and spending ⁢significant time with them can⁢ lead to them⁢ eating from ⁤your hand and allowing touch.
  • Pheasants can fly, necessitating a‍ large, secure ⁤enclosure with a high fence and mesh top to prevent escapes.
  • Predators such as foxes, coyotes, minks, birds of prey, and even neighborhood ⁢cats and dogs can pose a threat to pheasants.
  • A⁣ daily routine is crucial for pheasant care, ‍including ⁣secure housing at night, along with providing fresh food and water every day.
  • Pheasants eat a varied diet including plants, grains, seeds, ‍berries, insects, and small invertebrates, and​ feeding takes place mainly in the morning and evening.
  • Social animals by nature, pheasants fare best in groups, preferably with two ⁢females to​ one male to avoid conflicts among ‍males.
  • In⁤ captivity, pheasants ⁣can live‍ up to 10 years⁢ with proper care, significantly longer than their wild counterparts.

Can you keep a pheasant as a pet? As always, the answer depends, but this time especially on what you mean by the term “pets”. Many people hold pheasants in one form or another, and the use these birds have varies. In this article, I will detail whether the pheasant is a good pet or not.

If you want to keep a pheasant as a pet, and I am not talking about using them as poultry or for eggs, you need to consider a few things. Although they are easy to maintain as animals, this does not mean they are necessarily good pets.

Pheasants are not domesticated, and taming them can take time

This sounds somewhat strange because the pheasants have been living close to humans for many centuries. However, domestication in a strict sense is based on genetic change. This can be seen, for example, in chickens.

Wild instincts still control the behavior of the pheasants. Even the best training program will not change that. You should spend a lot of time earning the trust of your company animals. You need to spend a few hours a day running, feeding, and touching them if possible.

In addition, taming is easier when the birds are young. Getting those that are barely hatched should be your option, if you are looking for an exotic pet that likes, or has nothing against being petted.

A company pheasant should not be trained. All you have to do is tame the bird so it gets used to your presence. If you spend a lot of time with a chicken, it is likely that it will eat from your hand, and let itself be touched when it becomes an adult.

Can pheasants fly?

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Of course, there are many birds that can fly, almost all of them. But compared to a chicken, a pheasant can fly. Even if they prefer to run. It’s definitely something you need to consider when building an enclosure for your pet birds. A pheasant needs a suitable space of several square meters to roam, a high fence of at least 1.5 to 2 m, and a mesh at the top to prevent escape.

The pheasants must be protected from predators

Depending on where you live, some predators will be interested in your pheasants. Foxes and coyotes, as well as minks and birds of prey, are their natural enemies. But the cats and dogs in the neighborhood can also be curious. Make sure the fence is robust and the mesh at the top is well fixed.

Be prepared for a daily routine

Owning pet birds is something for people who can take responsibility for. Every day, you will have to close your pets at night and let them go outside every morning. In addition, you need to feed them with fresh food and water every day. If you are going on vacation, you should always find other people who are willing to do the job.


Pheasants eat a wide variety of plants, grains, seeds, berries, insects, and small invertebrates. Generally, they dig the ground with their claws to find food. Feeding is done in the morning and in the evening. The pheasant also eats agricultural crop products such as wheat, corn, and barley. Wild grapes, apples, and blackberries are just a few of the fruits that the pheasant eats. Insects include locusts, caterpillars, crickets, and snails.

Pheasants are sociable animals

Pheasants are social animals and prefer to live in pairs. It is best to buy two females and one male. Avoid keeping two males in the same enclosure because, in the breeding season, they will start fighting for females.

You can keep pheasants with almost all the other birds you can imagine. Chickens, ducks, and geese are very good companions if you intend to keep several species.

How long does a pheasant live in captivity?

Reeves's PheasantIn the wild, pheasants reach 3-4 years, and of course, this is much different in captivity. If you take good care of the pheasants, they can live up to 10 years. There were even cases of pheasants who lived 20 years in captivity. So, keeping a pheasant as a pet is a long-term commitment.

How many species of pheasants are there?

There are, in total, about 50 species of pheasants as well as 16 subspecies. Some of the most common species of pheasants include:

  • Common pheasant, or Ring-necked Pheasant
  • The golden pheasant
  • Silver pheasant
  • Lady Amherst’s pheasant
  • Reeves’ pheasant
  • The Mikado pheasant

Are pheasants related to pigeons and peacocks?

Pheasants and peacocks are part of the same family of birds called Phasianidae. Phasianidae also includes birds such as chickens, partridges, turkeys, and western capercaillies. Peacocks and pheasants live in different parts of the world and are different in size and color. They are related, but not entirely identical. To make things even more complicated, there is a third related species Phasianidae called Palawan peacock-pheasant, which are not genetically related to pheasants but only remotely related to peacock.

Pigeons and pheasants are not part of the same scientific family. Pigeons can fly much further and are much smaller than pheasants. There is also the pheasant pigeon, a species of pigeon from New Guinea, which has the same colors and insignia as the pheasant and also the same type of habitation on the ground.

Whether you want pheasants for meat and eggs, or just as a visual attraction, I hope I have helped you get an idea of what the world of pheasants means and their growth. Keeping pheasants as pets will certainly be fascinating from day one.

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