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Birding Málaga


Common name Common pheasant
Scientific name Phasianus colchicus
Type Farmland birds
Status Resident

Large terrestrial bird (approx 89 cm or 35 in). Unmistakable galliform for its appearance, colouration and long tail. Males with plumage of rufous tones with white and black spots. Dark green head, red ear tags and a white neck ring. Less showy females, brown tones with black specks. Flamboyant flight, with buzzing and great flapping of wings.


Cultivated areas

Where it lives

Asian species introduced in the peninsula for hunting purposes. It acclimates well in mixed agricultural environments with forest areas. Preference for edge areas with alternating pastures, hedges, farmlands and scattered trees.

How it lives

Exotic bird related to Malaga hunting grounds in which releases are carried out and there are surviving specimens that end up acclimating. Resident all year round in the province. The Common Pheasant breeds between March and June. There are monogamous couples and males that form harems of females. Several layings of 7 to 12 eggs. Nest on the ground. Omnivore feeding. It consumes insects, especially during the breeding period.

Where it can be seen in Malaga

Frequent bird in hunting grounds of middle mountain in which there are frequent releases or intensive preserves. It can be watched in almost the whole province occasionally, more often in the region of Antequera and on the coast between Benahavís and Estepona.

Curious facts

Massive releases of game birds not only have little success, but cause a pull factor to predators, especially foxes, responsible for the poor survival of birds and for cleaning the field of birds of very poor genetic and health quality. However, almost always there is a percentage of birds that survive and some of them get to reproduce. In the case of the pheasant and in the province of Malaga, this percentage reaches almost 40%, which explains why it is a bird that is expanding successfully in the province.

Wintering Summer Resident Migration