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A photo of a Golden Pheasant (Chrysolophus pictus), male
Golden Pheasant, Male

Golden Pheasant

Chrysolophus pictus

The golden pheasant (Chrysolophus pictus), also known as the Chinese pheasant, and rainbow pheasant, is a gamebird of the order Galliformes (gallinaceous birds) and the family Phasianidae (pheasants). Males have a golden-yellow crest with a hint of red at the tip. The face, throat, chin, and the sides of neck are rusty tan. The wattles and orbital skin are both yellow in colour, and the ruff or cape is light orange. The upper back is green and the rest of the back and rump is golden-yellow. The tertiaries are blue whereas the scapulars are dark red. Other characteristics of the male plumage are the central tail feathers, black spotted with cinnamon, as well as the tip of the tail being a cinnamon buff. The upper tail coverts are the same colour as the central tail feathers. The male also has a scarlet breast, and scarlet and light chestnut flanks and underparts. Lower legs and feet are a dull yellow. The female (hen) is much less showy, with a duller mottled brown plumage similar to that of the female common pheasant. She is darker and more slender than the hen of that species, with a proportionately shorter tail (half her 60–80 cm (24–31 in) length). The female's breast and sides are barred buff and blackish brown, and the abdomen is plain buff. She has a buff face and throat. Some abnormal females may later in their lifetime get some male plumage. Lower legs and feet are a dull yellow. Both males and females have yellow legs and yellow bills.
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