The ring-necked pheasant, though widely associated with Minnesota's farmland region, is actually an exotic species native to China that was first introduced to this state in 1905.
Rooster (male) pheasants are brightly colored birds that have a bright red eye patch surrounded by iridescent violet and green feathers on their head. A bright white feather necklace gives the bird its name. Roosters, which weigh roughly 2.5 to 3 pounds, also have a long tail, which can be over 2 feet long.
Hen pheasants weigh roughly 2 to 2.5 pounds. They have a shorter tail and are drab-colored compared to the rooster. The hen's tan plumage provides perfectly colored camouflage when she is nesting and helps her escape the probing eyes of foxes, hawks, and other predators.