Ring-Necked Pheasants a Common Sight in Smethport

Smethport Web — by Nathan Muller

The Pennsylvania Game Commission released over 200,000 ring-necked pheasants for the fall small-game hunting season, with McKean County getting 580 cocks and 1,370 hens.

As a result, pheasants are becoming a more common sight in Smethport. Residents may occasionally spot a nye of pheasants in the most unexpected places like backyards, where they may be seen rummaging through abandoned flower beds and vegetable gardens.

Pheasants have even been seen crossing Main Street, forcing traffic to slow down. A bird hit by a vehicle should be reported if it has a leg band. The toll-free number stamped on the tag is used to report the date and location. This information goes into a study on pheasant harvest rates, along with hunter-provided information.

A similar study on pheasant harvest rates was conducted in the fall of 1998, which found about 50 percent of pheasants stocked by the Game Commission were harvested.

The Game Commission will use the results of this fall’s study, not only to determine pheasant harvest rates, but also to assess opportunities to maximize the number of hunter-harvested pheasants through changes in stocking strategies.

The general pheasant hunting season closed on November 28. The late season opens Monday, December 14.