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The food habits of the ring-necked pheasant in Minnesota



The food habits of the ring-necked pheasant in Minnesota



Jour Wildlife Management 4(1): 27-36



The crop and gizzard contents of 659 Minnesota pheasants (Phasianus colchicus torquatus) collected in every month of the year were analyzed. Cultivated grains formed 81.3% of the total annual food. Corn was the most important single item in the pheasant's diet, 49.5% of all the food eaten. Other important grains were oats, barley, and wheat. The damage that pheasants are claimed to do to growing corn is greatly exaggerated. The annual weed crop is very little affected by pheasants even though they consume large quantities of weed seeds. Seeds of the foxtails (Setaria viridis and S. glauca) and common ragweed (Ambrosia artemisiaefolia) are the most important foods obtained from weeds. Wolfberry (Sym-phoricarpos occidentalis) was the largest of the fruit items. Grasshoppers and crickets made up nearly 75% of the total volume of animal food. Grasshoppers were consumed in the largest amounts in April and July when in the egg and nymphal stages, respectively.

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Accession: 025795092

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DOI: 10.2307/3796264


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