A distinctive feature of pheasants is their attractive appearance. Males have a bright color, as well as a large and long tail. The females are most often with gray plumage with small specks all over their body, which may be brown or black. But here it is important to understand that the color of pheasants may depend on the environmental conditions in which they are grown, so do not be surprised if you see a bird that does not fall under this description.
Conditions of detention
Pheasants whose living conditions play a very important role can be bred on a domestic and industrial scale. In the latter case, the main efforts are aimed at accelerating growth and increasing the number of poultry. Breeding of this bird can be carried out for commercial purposes and bring a good income to the farmer.
If you are planning an industrial cultivation and breeding of pheasants, then you must have a large territory at your disposal, since, as statistics show, the population may reach 10,000 individuals. On small farms, poultry can be grown to meet their own needs.
Pheasants, breeding and maintenance at home, which we consider next, are often found on small farms. Novice poultry farmers first start several males and females, gradually increasing the number of birds. Both pheasants and common hens can be engaged in incubation of eggs. In addition, you can build an incubator for this.
Where to begin?
If you have never been engaged in breeding pheasants before, then it is better to start with a silver breed, because it adapts well in any climatic conditions and is less demanding to care. In addition, the bird quickly gains weight, so it is faster to recoup the cost of fattening and maintenance.
The content of pheasant can be carried out both in cages and on free-range. The first method is used when the main task of the farmer is to fatten the bird as soon as possible and put it to meat. During the breeding season, great attention should be paid to their diet, which should be rich in protein. Small pheasants, up to two months old, are usually fed with combined feeds, in which protein content reaches 26 percent.
If you want to increase livestock, then the bird is placed on a free range. This will require a free aviary, in which 2-3 pheasants should fall into one square meter. As for the soil, the best option would be sand. The aviary is enclosed with a metal grid and covered with a canopy that will protect the birds from the weather and the sun's rays on hot days.
Inside the enclosure, it is recommended to place old trees and bushes in order to keep conditions of detention as close to natural as possible. Also, it should be spacious bathing tanks, which are filled with a mixture of wood ash and sand.
The maintenance of a pheasant with the aim of increasing the livestock should be subject to one rule: no more than three females should fall on one male. Otherwise, the poultry egg production falls dramatically.
From late winter to late summer, chicks are kept in separate enclosures, after which they can be placed in common. It is important to ensure the peace of the bird, because it does not tolerate stressful situations. For example, pheasants can be frightened by loud noises or sudden movements, which, in turn, reduces their egg production.
One of the advantages of this bird is that they tolerate frosts well, so for the winter period there is no need to warm the premises of their housing or equip the heating system.
Characteristics of pheasants
The weight of an adult individual can reach two kilograms. At the same time, males are larger than females. The optimal time for fertilization comes at the end of winter or early spring, when the male is brought to the female. One female can lay up to 50 eggs per season. Care, maintenance and breeding of pheasants do not require much effort. They lay eggs for about three months. One egg weighs an average of 30 grams. The bird can build nests throughout the aviary, while forgetting the location of all of them. Therefore, it is important to periodically pick up the eggs and place them on the hen or place them in the incubator.
Here it is important to take into account the fact that each breed of pheasants prefers to lay eggs in completely different places - grass, bushes and near trees. Therefore, if necessary, the farmer will have to build appropriate nests for the birds.
During the period of fertilization, it is forbidden to run several males to one female, since they can fight each other for a female until only one of them is alive.
As for eating habits, the diet of pheasants has much in common with chicken. The best option would be the use of green fodder and wet mash. The daily rate of feed for one individual is 100 grams.
If you are planning to keep pheasants at home, then you need to have an idea of what breeds of this bird exist. This is important because each breed has certain preferences that should be considered for maximum egg production and fast fattening of the bird.
Today, among the majority of farmers engaged in breeding pheasants, three breeds are most popular:
Let's take a closer look at each of them and try to figure out which one is better to choose for breeding at home.
This breed was bred by Chinese breeders. Diamond pheasants have many drawbacks, but they are bred because of their large size. The main difficulties of keeping and breeding are to create and maintain a certain microclimate. The fact is that this breed is thermophilic and when frost over 25 degrees the livestock may die. Therefore, for the winter period in the room in which pheasants are kept, it is necessary to build a heating system.
In addition, the diet should contain large amounts of vitamins and minerals. The bird must receive fresh greens and fish oil. Egg production can reach 30 eggs per season. Maximum body weight - 1 kilogram.
The content of this breed is less troublesome than diamond, so silver pheasants are the most common around the world. China is also the birthplace of this bird, but this breed perfectly adapts to the climatic regions of the area in which it is bred; therefore, silver pheasants take root well in our country. This is due to thick plumage, thanks to which the bird can withstand severe frosts. But the aviary should be well protected from drafts, because otherwise pheasants can get sick and die.
The average body weight of an adult individual is about 5 kilograms, and egg production is at a level of 50 eggs per season. One of the advantages of this breed is a quick weight gain, so it can be bred not only for the purpose of increasing the population, but also to get meat that has excellent taste and is widely used in cooking for cooking a large number of dishes.
The content of the golden pheasant is one of the simplest, since this breed is one of the most unpretentious. This bird is not grown on an industrial scale due to its small size and low weight, but it will fit perfectly for decorative breeding.
In one season, the female golden pheasant is able to produce about 25 eggs. The maximum body weight of an adult individual reaches 1 kilogram. Meat does not have a special taste, so it is not used in cooking.
The room, which contains golden pheasants, should be heated in winter, because the bird does not tolerate low temperatures. With a frost of 20 degrees, all livestock may die. Feed the best fresh greens. In addition, fish oil should also be present in the diet, as well as various supplements containing vitamins C, B6 and B12.
What to feed?
Keeping your own pheasants requires proper feeding. For feeding the chicks use mash, prepared from ground boiled eggs and fresh greens. Serum is given instead of water. As the chicks grow, the combined feed is gradually introduced into the daily ration. In the second week, you can begin to give millet porridge cooked in milk. At two months of age, you can fully translate into basic foods that are given to adult pheasants.
For feeding adults, wheat, barley, corn, and fresh vegetables are used. In order to strengthen the immune system and increase the resistance of birds to disease, ascorbic acid and sugar are added to the combined feed. Also essential components of the diet is fish oil and bone meal, which are an excellent source of trace elements.
In addition, the content of pheasant, regardless of age and breed, involves frequent replacement of water. The thing is that the bird drinks only cold water.
During the breeding season, pheasants should be given antibiotics, which can increase egg production by approximately 40 percent.
Peculiarities of winter maintenance
The content of pheasants in winter requires an increase in the daily feeding rate. In addition, birds should be given vitamin supplements to increase their resistance to negative environmental factors and diseases. Additional lighting should be created in the house, since the optimal length of daylight for pheasants is 14 hours. If this is not done, the bird will begin to lose weight, and its growth and development will slow down significantly.
Diseases and control of them
The maintenance of pheasants in the backyard is a rather simple and unceasing exercise, because with proper care and feeding the bird is very rarely ill. But the likelihood of the disease still exists, so it is important to recognize the disease in time and begin appropriate treatment.
All diseases to which pheasants are susceptible can be divided into 3 categories:
Infectious diseases include various ailments caused by viruses or fungi. These are smallpox, laryngotracheitis and aspergillosis. This category of diseases is the most dangerous, because in the absence of treatment the livestock dies out very quickly.
Non-communicable diseases include dermatitis and emphysema. The diseased bird poses no threat to other individuals, but if left untreated, it can die.
Invasive diseases are those caused by various parasites. These include scabies and infection with lice. For treatment, a 0.15 percent neguven solution is used.
Advantages and disadvantages of pheasant breeding
Pheasants, maintenance and care of which were considered earlier, can be an excellent source of income.
The advantages of this business are:
- Dietary meat with excellent taste
- low competition in this area.
Among the main disadvantages are the need for large investments at the stage of starting a business, as well as the creation of suitable conditions for the content.
As it turned out, to care for these birds is not so difficult. The most important thing is to provide them with the right care. But be that as it may, to breed pheasants or not - every farmer decides for himself.
However, if you do not want to do this on an industrial scale, then you should definitely start on your farm at least a few individuals for the diet and incredibly tasty meat.
Purchase of eggs, chicks or adults
There are three main ways to base your pheasant farm:
- Catching wild pheasant in the wild
- Purchase of hatching eggs
- Purchase of young or adult birds from breeders.
Buying hatching eggs does not require large financial costs, if you have incubators and hens as hens. That is, it means that you have at least the experience of breeding chickens. The second important point for the successful breeding of eggs - careful transportation. Eliminate shaking and temperature changes.
The most productive option for beginners is to purchase grown young animals of 4–5 weeks of age. Healthy young animals are mobile, with a pronounced reflex to the search for food, they are well and quickly oriented in space, in the environment. Mandatory dried up, well-healed umbilical cord. The skin is pale pink, beak and nostrils without extraneous growths. The first 3-4 months have no gender differences.
In addition to young stock for successful breeding of pheasants, purchase of adult pedigree individuals from 9 months well justifies itself. It is best to buy grown-up pheasants in the fall so that they become comfortable during the winter and begin to multiply in the spring. The younger the bird, the faster it becomes accustomed to new conditions and begins to multiply. Breeding is better to start with the hunting breeds, they are more unpretentious.
Outside of the breeding season, pheasants are kept in same-sex groups or in small flocks. Tokanie begins in early spring with an increase in daylight. The male during the tokan period protects his nest section from rivals. In some species, females fight for nesting territory.
Many species of pheasants are monogamous, some polygamous. Often, pairs are stored only for the period of egg-laying, much less frequently for the entire breeding period (before hatching). For example, peacock pheasants are strictly monogamous and do not get along with other pheasants and kuropodobnymi. Keep them in pairs, otherwise there are fights to the death between the males. They live quite peacefully with other species of birds: geese, ducks, pigeons. Hunting pheasant is polygamous in nature (2–3 females), but if in the population the preponderance of males remains with one female.
Most popular breeds
- Diamond. From the highlands of China. Decorative, sensitive to frost. Up to 30 eggs per season. It is necessary to add in the diet of fish oil, vitamins, herbs. Weight up to 1 kg. Monogamous
- Silver. Most popular due to high productivity. Sensitive to drafts, tolerates cold. High egg production and rapid weight gain. Weight up to 4–5 kg. Up to 50 eggs per season.
- Steppe hunting. Adapted to our climate. Not afraid of changes in temperature, unpretentious to the diet, strong immunity. Weight up to 2.5 kg, up to 45 eggs per season. Monogamy depends on the circumstances.
- Gold. Decorative breed. 25 eggs per season. Weight just over 1 kg. Heat loving. Add to the feed vitamins, herbs, fish oil. He lives in families, polygamy.
Reproduction and microclimate
Males of pheasant begin to flow with the onset of spring in March – April. The female begins to lay eggs after 14–20 days from the onset of toking. A few days after mating, the female pheasant builds a nest. It is usually located under a shrub or tuft of grass, some species (horned and glossy pheasants) use old nests of other birds on shrubs and trees. Shrubs are preferable not only for nesting, but also feeding and overnight. The nest is covered with dry stems, leaves of plants, feathers and down.
Age for mating: females 8–18 months, males 1–2.5 years. After 2-3 years of age, the birds do not mate. A month before mating, antibiotics are introduced into the diet of females to improve egg production and increase the number of fertilized eggs.
In the enclosures planted shrubs in which the female can lay eggs. For non-estates of shrubs, small huts of tied stalks of reeds, reeds, cereals or corn tops are put up. Under a bush or tent, they dig a shallow hole, cover it with dry stems, leaves, sprigs, feathers, down, moss. For horned and peacock pheasants, baskets of wicker and willow rods are fixed on trees or nailed to walls. Females during the nesting period are very shy and excitable. During the breeding period, the males fight to the death.
In separate pens, pheasants are held from February to August, then transferred to a common aviary. Pheasant is very sensitive to cold. In a warm house, they consume less feed and grow faster, heat does not go into the surrounding space.
Excretion in the incubator and under the hen
Pheasants are very susceptible to stress, noise and loud sounds. From this falls egg production. Females often forget where they laid eggs, you need to check all the nooks of the enclosure. Adding antibiotics during the breeding season increases the number of fertilized eggs by 35–40%. In winter, daylight hours extend to 14 hours.
In horned pheasants, the female lays 3–6 eggs every other day. To obtain the largest number of eggs you need to timely remove them from the nest. For the season you can get 4-5 clutches. It incubates and grows. Павлиний фазан откладывает по 2 яйца массой 30 г. У серебряного около 50 яиц за сезон. Продолжительность кладки 2,5–3 месяца. Масса одного яйца 30–35 г. Золотой фазан успешно размножается в неволе. Самка откладывает яйца начиная с апреля по 1 через день. В кладке до 12–16 яиц.
Хранятся яйца не больше недели, по размерам небольшие, с тонкой скорлупой. Выводят в инкубаторе или под карликовыми курами-бентанками. When hatching, the temperature in the incubator is 38.5 ° C, the humidity is 60–70%, the hatching process is 24 hours. From 1 to 15 days in the incubator requires high humidity and heat, on the contrary, ventilation is weak. Then, starting from the 15th day, the humidity and temperature are reduced, and ventilation is increased for better gas exchange of the developing embryos. During the hatching period (when a squeak is already heard in the eggs), the humidity again increases.
Eggs for incubation can not be stored under direct sunlight, hatchability decreases. 13–14 hunting pheasant eggs can be laid under the bentamka hen. It is recommended to enclose an odd number, so they are more densely located in the nest and it is more convenient for the hen to turn them over. On the 8th day of incubation, check eggs with an ovoscope.
Mixed way: the first 12 days under the hen, the rest of the time in the incubator. This increases the hatchability of chicks. Allows you to reduce the number of bantamok chicks and increase hatchability. The bantamok is kept warm, with additional lighting and in comfortable conditions, so that they start to rush early and by the time the pheasant eggs appear, they were ready to hatch the eggs of others, they were sitting apart.
Causes of poor hatchability:
- Defective eggs with the wrong diet of the parent flock,
- Improper storage and incubation mode,
- Infectious diseases of the hens, transmitted to the embryo, which hit the egg that was laid,
- Deformities, with closely related mating.
They feed the chicks in the first 8-12 hours after hatching.
Profitable business for poultry farmers
Is it possible to combine the desire to make money with a dream to have something unusual and very beautiful in your household? Can! All you need is to do this, what you need to breed ... pheasants on your plot.
Someone has a question, and whether this business will be really profitable. The answer to this question will be positive. Why? Yes, everything is simple:
- Pheasants belong to the family of chicken-like, therefore the process of hatching and keeping of these birds does not pose any particular difficulty.
- The taste of pheasant meat is far superior to chicken. It is especially valuable for restaurants, as it is still somewhat exotic.
- High egg production of pheasants is also an important factor for poultry farmers.
- Some breed and grow this bird for hunting. However, in this case, pheasants should be kept in cages, where their content will be as close as possible to natural ones. Otherwise the bird will grow tame, and this will not be of interest to the hunters.
- Since the bird is very beautiful, simply even luxurious, it is happy to buy zoos and menageries. Yes, and novice pheasant breeders often turn for fertilized eggs, young and adults.
Differences in the content of pheasants and chickens
The first thing to consider is the aggressiveness of the males. Although the roosters are quite pugnacious, it is precisely the pheasants among themselves that if they fight, it is not for life, but for death. Therefore, in no case can not keep the males in one aviary.
There is such a difference of this species of birds from chickens: among the pheasants there are breeds that are classified as monogamous. Naturally, they should be kept in pairs.
And those breeds that, like most representatives of poultry, are polygamous, usually settle on 4-6 individuals in an open-air cage with one male. Moreover, the pheasant breeder should remember that the more females in the family, the lower their egg production.
The minimum size of the area required for one adult bird should not be less than 2 square meters.
Organization of pheasants for egg-laying
Females of this species of galliformes also have their own habits. If chickens usually get used to rush in the same nest, then phechani do not have such a memory. Their eggs can be in various places. Therefore, the poultry farmer needs to be patient and carefully search every corner of the place where the bird is located.
And also the pheasant breeder needs to find out where the females of the breed that his choice fell are preferring to carry. After all, there are those who lay eggs exclusively in the grass, others will choose for this purpose a tall shrub. And there are those for whom it is preferable to lay an egg ... in the branches of trees.
It is impossible to “re-educate” a bird — it is driven by instinct. Therefore, the pheasant breeder has only one option: following the natural habits of pets, arrange them as comfortable as possible.
Reproduction of pheasants at home
If the breeder caught an adult bird in the forest and decided to get offspring from it, then he set himself an extremely difficult task. Very often in captivity a pheasant, accustomed to freedom, does not sit down to hatch chicks. Although sometimes the poultry farmers get pheasant to bring their own offspring. But the result is especially successful if the bird itself was already born in the aviary.
Therefore, it is easier to try to lay eggs under the chicken or in the incubator. This is also convenient because in these cases the brood will be easier to tame.
But it should be remembered that the incubation period of pheasant eggs is longer than chicken eggs. It is 24-25 days.
Motherless chicks do not need artificial light, unlike chicken chickens. Moreover, excessive light causes cannibalism.
To prevent the chicks from crushing each other, they should be kept in 30 pieces in the compartments with an area of at least one square meter. The air temperature in the first three days should be +28 degrees. Then it is gradually reduced to +20 degrees. As such, it should remain up to six months. Further, the bird is considered an adult and does not require special treatment.
The brood is fed for the first two months with a boiled egg, chopped with greens. Then transferred to adult food.
Care for adult pheasants
Air temperature for individuals older than six months does not play a special role. Even in winter, they can be kept outdoors. It is much more important to organize for them the freedom of movement in enclosures and proper nutrition.
This bird is distinguished by its gluttony. The main part of the diet consists of barley, corn and wheat. Good results helps to achieve the addition to the meal cake.
Since all chicken-like are omnivorous, boiled offal and meat waste, fish, meat of river mollusks will be very useful.
It is worth remembering: be sure to give pheasants greens, fruits and vegetables!
Grated raw potatoes, pumpkins, cabbage, apples, carrots, beets, zucchini are essential components of the diet of an adult bird. Chopped greens (shchiritsa, quinoa, nettle, wood louse, green onions) are also extremely useful, as it is a storehouse of vitamins and microelements.
It is useful to add fish oil, shell rock, chalk, bone meal and special factory additives for breeding poultry in the mix.
Favorite delicacy for pheasants are Colorado beetles.
Drinking pheasants give cold. And in the winter it is possible to use snow for this purpose.
The main feature of pheasants is their sensitivity to stress and fearfulness. Therefore, you should be careful when dealing with this bird: do not shout and do not make sharp movements near the enclosures, make sure that individuals do not fight with each other, try not to let strangers to them.
Types of pheasants for home breeding
The grouse family has a huge number of species and an order of magnitude more subspecies, while the habitat covers almost the whole of Russia. Today in the entire middle lane there are representatives of pheasant dwellers living in the wild. By and large, it is considered conditionally domesticated bird. Home-grown pheasant is able to fully acclimatize in natural conditions in a few days. Such a property of a bird makes it possible to use conditionally domestic pheasants in a real hunt.
The main type suitable for growing at home is considered to be hunting pheasant. This breed was bred by a man in the course of numerous crosses of different subspecies of the pheasant.
Conditions of the content and methods of cultivation of pheasant at home
For breeding birds, two basic conditions are necessary.
- - space. Each bird needs a minimum of 2 square meters, provided that the family is kept and of the order of 5 squares for group housing in large aviaries.
- - aviaries. In contrast to other poultry for breeding pheasant dwelling houses will need not just an aviary, but a fully enclosed and covered from above.
The undoubted advantage is the possibility of keeping birds without special winter campers, they are not afraid of frost and winter well in the same enclosures in which they are in summer.
For breeding for fattening, poultry are kept in large groups using ordinary feed for chicken products as feed. During reproduction, the pattern changes, birds are divided into families with a ratio of one male to 2-3 femalesOther arrangements are possible, with a ratio of 1 male to 4-7 females (depending on the specific circumstances). Practice shows that with an increase in the number of females, egg production decreases per male and the number of fertilized eggs significantly decreases.
On average, one female per season (from March to July) carries about 50 eggs, although depending on the line and the quality of the breeding herd, the number of eggs can increase to 100 per season. The practice of breeding has shown that the introduction into the diet of laying hens is erythromycin (21.5 g), penicillin-sodium salt (0.3 g), terramix-10 (1.1 g), biovit-40 (0.7 g), biomitsin (0.02 g), allows to increase egg production by 35-40%.
Pheasant females are rather bad “mothers” and hatch eggs badly, practice shows that out of 50 eggs laid, no more than 10-15 pheasants can actually be hatched in a season. Eggs are laid on farms or in an incubator, if there is no such possibility, then mothers, turkeys, and indo-henchas “enclose” this more conscientious.
Data on the reproduction of different species at home
Features breeding pheasants
Growing these rare birds at home for beginners may seem difficult at first glance, but in fact, by providing them with optimal living, you will not face difficulties.
Note: They have a timid nature, so they can easily fly away or run away from a person. To prevent this from happening, they are equipped with spacious net enclosures at least two meters high. On top of the design must cover the nylon mesh.
No less attention should be paid to feed. Representatives of this type eat a lot, so they need to harvest a lot of different feeds, including green, juicy and cereals, as well as regularly prepare wet mash and produce mineral supplements.
Growing livestock in the farm is based not only on the purpose of keeping (for hunting, getting meat or eggs), but also on the physiological characteristics of birds (Figure 1).
Figure 1. Features of incubation at home
Depending on the breed, there is a clear separation between family and group content. Family implies living in one aviary only the family of the male and female. With a group on the run, one male with 4-5 females is released.
It is also important to take into account that they have a bad memory, therefore females lay eggs throughout the territory of the enclosure. Because of this feature, you need to immediately build a walk so that the owner does not spend a lot of time searching for clutches.
Breeding pheasants in the farm
Many novice poultry farmers are interested in the question of why such cultivation is practiced not only in large but also in small farms. This is due, primarily, a wide market for products.
First, they are kept to produce eggs for their own consumption and for sale. Secondly, carcasses are in high demand in the market and thirdly, they are used for further sale to zoological and hunting farms.
Growing this type is considered quite profitable business. In addition to the cost of building an enclosure (which will last you more than one year) and the purchase of feed, there will be practically no other financial waste.
All adults tolerate even the most severe frosts; therefore, it is not necessary to install additional heaters in the house. In addition, the market has a very high demand not only for eggs and meat, but also for live animals that are fed and sold to hunting farms.
Silver Pheasant: breeding
Silver breed is valued for its unusual color and beautiful tuft on the head. She was bred in China, but is now successfully grown in our country (Figure 4).
Birds are unpretentious, but it will be better if you arrange for them a spacious aviary with a small bird house, trees and shrubs around the perimeter. From above the open-air cage necessarily cover with a grid that birds did not fly away.
Figure 4. Cultivation of silvery rock at home
You can feed them with any cereals, fresh greens, wet mash and chopped root vegetables.
Royal Pheasant: breeding
Royal also belongs to elite breeds, therefore it is often bred for further sale in hunting farms and zoos (Figure 5).
Figure 5. Representatives of the royal breed
This breed rather willingly breeds in captivity, but, as is the case with other species, it is better to hatch in an incubator.