Updates (3/13/10)

I haven’t done much birding and blogging lately as I’m still recovering from surgery. I considered maybe going to a local spot this weekend, but, as I type I take a break to stare out the window at the downpour. It’s all too bad-but as they say, it’s still nice weather for ducks! Last week’s poll was a great success, though I think I went about a little too strongly in excluding non-birders (I still had some anesthesia to clear out) but still hope that people learn a little background on the question before answering it. This week’s poll is: Do WILD Ring-necked Pheasants Still Breed In CT?, inspired by the recent discussion on CTBirds.

I’ve seen male pheasants a number of times at South Pine Creek Open Space near my home. However, I have not seen or heard them in more than a year and am scared that they are either or on the brink of local extirpation. Because I have only seen male pheasants, these birds could be crowing for a female that’s just not there. As shown on CTBirds, there’s a difference between wild or released birds, but it’s hard to decide if the pheasant you see in the brush on Percy St. is in fact wild or was released by a gun club a month earlier. To read up on the subject, click on the word CTBirds when it occurs in the post.

Take the poll and decide if you think Ring-necked Pheasants still breed in CT!

-AB

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2 Responses to Updates (3/13/10)

  1. Marcy K says:

    Alex,

    I am so glad that you are feeling well enough to post again! A woman who works at my school had a hen pheasant with young at her feeder last spring – this is in Durham. It was the first I’d heard of it. I have occasionally run into a cock or hen on horseback in the spring also. I think they were probably survivors of the hunting season. By the way, I saw my first painted turtle sunning itself on the bank of Sumner Brook here in Middletown last weekend while I was kayaking. Better days are coming! marcy

  2. Charlie says:

    Hi Alex,

    I thought that you might be interested in knowing of 2 places in Fairfield where pheasants were once raised. One was in a backyard at the intersection of Oldfield Road and South Pine Creek Avenue. A fellow had pens in his backyard there, many years ago. That was in the 1950’s and I would bet that he released birds into the Pine Creek marsh area.
    Another location was up on either Congress Street near the Grace Richardson Open Space Area or just to the North on Hoyden’s Hill, near where the Hoyden’s Hill Open Space area is today. That place was a big operation and they had enough land to allow people to pay to hunt the birds which were released up there. It was called the Cedar Ridge Hunting Preserve. It disappeared back in the late 1950’s or early 1960’s.
    There are still Northern Bobwhite showing up from time to time at Hoyden’s Hill. It would be interesting to know their source. To my knowledge, the state does not release bobwhite at all.

    I have asked Dennis V. to inquire of his contacts at the CT.DEP as to whether or not the state releases hen pheasants as well as males.
    Keep making progress.
    Charlie

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