The (Pheasant Bird) male is unmistakable, a big, brightly plumaged bird with a long olive-brown, black-barred tail, a metallic green head with a large red wattle around the eyes, little tufts at the rear of the crown and a copper-coloured body marked with black and pale scallops. The Pheasant Bird (female) is a demure brown all over. Introduced into Western Europe many centuries ago, many are bred for shooting. The plumage can be highly variable due to different races having been released, but the common form typically has a white neck-ring. The natural range extends from north Turkey across to China, and there are a large number of different races with varying plumage characteristics.
Pheasant Bird is commonly encountered in farmlands where it favours crop fields, pastures and rough ground, woodland edges and open woodland, also in scrub and reedbeds, and anywhere that is a little damp with good ground cover. In their natural range they are shy, and can be found in similar habitats, also extending into the foothills of mountain ranges or into semi-desert regions where water is present.
The display or advertising call of the Pheasant Bird (male) is a loud far-carrying "karck-kahk!" or "aarrkh-ukh", often followed immediately by a quick audible whirr of the wings. This is usually delivered with the head pointing upwards, and sometimes from a raised perch. Sometimes any loud noise, such as the slamming of a car door, can trigger this call. Both sexes can be noisy when flushed, making loud "kh'kh'k!" or "uuk-ukh! uuk-ukh!" calls. The Pheasant Bird (female) also has a piping whistle.