Humes Bartail Information

Scientific Information

Class: Aves

Order: Galliformes

Family: Phasianidae

Subfamily: Phasianinae

Genus: Syrmaticus

Species: Syrmaticus humiae

Species English name: Humes Bartail

CITES Status: CITIES I - endangered

Distribution: Manipur, Burma

(from A Monograph of Pheasants Volumes III & IV, William Beebe)


Description

• Male - greyish head with metallic blue and purple neck. Reddish bronze wings with metallic blue patch and white striping on each wing. Black and white scale patterned back. Silver grey tail with black and chestnut barring. Red wattles.

• Female - tawny taupe body colour with brown, black and tan markings. Similar to an Elliot hen, but lighter and more tannish. Middle tail feathers are body colour with barring and outer tail feathers on both sides are reddish brown. Both types of tail feathers posses a white tippet.


Diet

• We feed our breeders and young adults 16% layer pellets, our tiny chicks 25% Turkey Starter crumble, and our growing chicks 20% crumble.

• They get a handful of mixed grains every second day except during breeding season, fresh greens (lettuce, chickweed, dandelions, grass) and fruits (tomato, grapes, berries, etc.) when available.


Breeding

• Done in pairs or trios. Best success with pairs.

• Humes are first year birds meaning that the female will lay eggs the spring fter she is hatched. The male is fertile the first year, but to a limited extent. Male reaches full fertility second year.

• They start laying eggs around the middle of April and will lay every second day until they lay approximately 12-18 eggs.

• They lay a small pale creamy egg.


Incubation

• Eggs are collected twice a day and marked with the date and breeding pair number and set daily.

• Eggs are set in an automatic turning Lyons Roll-X (RX2) with grid 109.

• Temperature 99.8°F, humidity-wet bulb 84 with humidity adjusted periodically depending on development of the air space shown by candling

• On the final day of incubation, each egg is placed in its own oval wire mesh hatching basket (6" x 3" x 3") and set in the Sportsman Rattite hatcher.

• Incubation for Humes is 24-25 days.

• After the chick hatches, it stays in the hatcher for a minimum of 8 hours.


Chicks

• When the chicks come out of the incubator they remind you of a pale version of an Elliot chick with less facial markings.

• They start out in our round 18" brooder pen with a mixed assortment of chicks. After a few days they are separated into a 2' x 4' baby pen for about a week. They are then transferred to a Humes-Elliot-Copper 2' x 6' pen for the next 7-9 weeks. They stay with this grouping until they go outside. All of these brooding pens have wire bottoms with a heat lamp at one end and feed & water at the other end. The heat lamp is attached to a dimmer switch so we can turn down the amount of heat as the chicks get older until it is turned off completely.

• After they are off of the heat for a few weeks, they are moved outside to the pheasant house (has outside grassy pens and a heated inside house part where they are blocked in for the night). At this point they are separated into an all Humes pen. After they are toughened up, they are moved to an outside chick pen.

• Chicks are very easy to raise together with their own kind.


Pens

• 25' long x 10' wide x 6' high with a 4' x 4' x 4' house in the middle.

• Pens are covered with 2" diamond top-rite.

• 1 teepee (18" X 18") containing straw in the corner for laying eggs.

• Pens contain grass, which needs to be mowed every few weeks to a month because they aren't very hardy grass eaters.

• See Scintillating Copper Article for predator proofing set-up


Behavior

• Are calm and very quiet birds. Spend most of the time dusting or sunning hemselves in the summer. They are a very showy bird with the female prancing and flicking her tail frequently and the male walking calmly and casually through the pen displaying his metallic brilliance.

• They are relatively easy to tame and are friendly and curious birds that come running when treats are to be had.



Article By Krissy & Donna Bush

Pheasant Ridge

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