Current Research


Project summary:  Research in east-central Illinois examines the influence of field and landscape characteristics on pheasant demography and inter-patch movement. Additional details are available on the project website.

Technical Committee contact:  Stan McTaggart, Illinois Department of Natural Resources


Ring-necked Pheasant production/movements in response to wind energy development.  Project leads: ISU/IDNR.

This project will measure ring-necked pheasant behavioral responses to wind turbines prior to and during the nesting season to assess possible avoidance behavior.  More information is available here.


Evaluation of Iowa Pheasant Recovery CRP SAFE practice using standardized crowing counts.  Project lead: IDNR.

This project will use N-mixture models with replicated spring crowing counts to estimate ring-necked pheasant rooster densities at treatment (SAFE) and control (random) sites stratified by landscape context.  More information on Iowa's SAFE program can be found here.


Grassland bird and invertebrate response to grassland diversity in restored plantings in NW Iowa.  Project leads: ISU/IDNR.

As part of a long-term project to compare breeding bird use of different habitat types in the Spring Run Wetland Complex, we used human imprinted pen-reared pheasant chicks to assess invertebrate prey availability in the treatment habitats.  Imprinted chicks followed researchers through treatment fields and were allowed to forage for 30 minutes.  Collected chicks are measured for weight gain to compare treatments.  More information can be found here.


Technical Committee contact for all projects:  Todd Bogenschutz, Iowa Department of Natural Resources


Project summary:  Pheasant responses to cover crop establishment are being studied in western Kansas.  The project involves radio-tagging pheasants and documenting their behavior in a landscape where cover crops and other habitats are available to the birds.

Technical Committee contact:  Jeff Prendergast, Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism


Project summary:  Current research in southwest Minnesota is evaluating pheasant habitat selection and survival to help inform grassland management efforts, especially forb interseeding.

Technical Committee contacts:  Dr. Nicole Davros and Lindsey Messinger, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources


Project summary:  This suite of projects includes measuring pheasant responses to landscape composition and hunting pressure.  More details are available on the University of Nebraska-Lincoln's pheasant research page.

Technical Committee contact:  Dr. Jeff Lusk, Nebraska Game and Parks Commission


Project summary:  This suite of research projects revolves around assessing the success of a 10-year pheasant restoration effort.

Technical Committee contacts:  Scott Klinger and Tom Keller, Pennsylvania Game Commission

South Dakota

Project summary:  This project involves modeling pheasant abundance in relation to landscape conditions.

Technical Committee contact:  Travis Runia, South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks


Photos courtesy of Tim Lyons (top), Nicole Davros (second from top) and Lindsey Messinger (third from top).