Golden Pheasants are native to the Eastern foothills of the Himalayas, especially China. The species is not endangered. In fact, Golden Pheasants have been kept as exotic pets in Europe ever since they were first encountered by the early traders.
The male birds can open their cheek feathers like a fan, with the piercing eye in the centre. They moult their feathers in the early Summer, and can look quite scruffy because their long tail feathers fall out as well as their facial feathers. Female birds have fairly drab brown plumage.
We used to have two male Golden Pheasants. The older bird had lived at the Aviary for many years, but died in 2012. The youngest was hatched in an incubator by one of our volunteers in 2010.