Blood Pheasant (Ithaginis cruentus) - Wiki
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[Photo] Ithaginis cruentus, Blood pheasant. Source: A Century of Birds from the Himalayas (1830-32). Date 1832. Author John Gould
The Blood Pheasant, Ithaginis cruentus, is the only species in genus Ithaginis of the Pheasant family. It has 15 different subspecies.
This species' name comes from the fact that the males have vivid red coloring on the feathers of the breast, throat and forehead. Females are more uniformly colored with duller shades of reddish brown. Both males and females have a distinct ring of bare skin around the eye that is crimson colored, in addition to red feet. Subspecies are determined by varying amounts of red and black feathers.
The Blood Pheasant lives in the mountains of Nepal, Sikkim, Tibet, northern Burma and the north-west areas of China. The habitat most preferred by Blood Pheasants is coniferous or mixed forests and scrub areas right at the snowline. The pheasants move their range depending on the seasons and during the summer are found at higher elevations. Populations move to lower elevations as the snow increases in the fall and winter. The Blood Pheasant is the state bird of the Indian state of Sikkim.
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