Lophura nycthemera whiteheadi
Other Names: No general names, see the list of subspecies for geographical names.
Subspecies: 15 subspecies according to Johnsgard, 1999. True Silver Pheasant (Lophura nycthemera nycthemera) being the most commonly claimed in aviaries. The True Silver is the largest of the subspecies and is found in southeastern China. The other subspecies include the Lewis' Silver Pheasant (L. n. lewisi), the Annamese Silver Pheasant (L. n. annamensis), the Boloven Silver Pheasant (L. n. engelbachi), the Bel's Silver Pheasant (L. n. beli), the Berlioz's Silver Pheasant (L. n. berliozi), the Ruby Mines Silver Pheasant (L. n. rufipes), the Rippon's Silver Pheasant (L. n. ripponi), the Jones' Silver Pheasant (L. n. jonesi), the Western Silver Pheasant (L. n. occidentalis), the Lao Silver Pheasant (L. n. beaulieui), the Fokien Silver Pheasant (L. n. fokiensis), the Hainan Silver Pheasant (L. n. whiteheadi), Szechwan Silver Pheasant (L. n. omeiensis) and the Rang Jiang Silver Pheasant (L. n. rongjiangensis).
Two additional subspecies that are often considered Silver Pheasants are the Crawfurd's Kalij Lophura nycthemera crawfurdi and the Lineated Kalij Lophura nycthemera lineata. Recent DNA work published in the Ibis, notes that these races should be belong with leucomelanos instead of nycthemera. Click here to view the article in PDF format. If NEW data becomes available for nycthemera and leucomelanos, I will be sure to include it on this site.
Range: South-western China, eastern Burma, southern Vietnam, southwestern Cambodia, southeastern Thailand, northern Laos and the island of Hainan.
Habitat: Diverse, both grasslands and bamboo, evergreen and decidous forests.
Status in Wild: Varies among races. nycthemera and fokiensis are considered common and stable, others such as annamensis, whiteheadi and engelbachi have smaller natural ranges and are vulnerable to habitat loss.
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1-2, Jan Harteman.
1-2, Myles Lamont.
1, World Pheasant Association.
1, Myles Lamont.
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