White Eared-Pheasant (Crossoptilon crossoptilon)

Range: China, from southeastern Tibet and western Szechuan, southern Qinghai, northwestern Yunnan.

Subspecies: There are four subspecies generally recognized, their geographical/common names: Szechuan C. c. crossoptilon, Dolan’s C. c. dolani, Tibetan or Drouyni C. c. drouyni, Yunnan C. c. lichiangense. The Harman’s Eared-Pheasant C. harmani, sometimes classed as a subspecies

Habitat: Rocky hillsides in coniferous forests, also in mixed forests in summer to the snow line.

Description: A distinctive large, overall white pheasant, with a velvety black crown, red facial skin and dark tail. Unlike other members of the genus, the ear-tufts are quite small and they carry a smaller, less ornate tail. Sexes are generally similar, but the hens are usually smaller.

Subspecies Variation: C. c. crossoptilon – Pure white chin, rest of body off-white, wing coverts tinged with gray; primaries dark gray to brown. C. c. lichiangense – Much like crossoptilon, but wings are lighter gray. C. c. drouyni – Whitest of the races, there is some light gray on the mantle; wings are white. C. c. dolani – Ashy gray overall with a white belly; wings are pale gray.

Breeding Season: Late April to June.

Breeding Age: Second year

Clutch Size: 4-7

Incubation Period: 24-25 days