Lucky escape from crocodile for plucky pheasant

One of The Living Rainforest’s most endangered inhabitants, a female Edward’s Pheasant, diced with death last weekend when she flew into the centre’s crocodile enclosure.

The dull brown red-beaked bird, misjudging her landing, fell into the sheer-sided crocodile enclosure, ending up in the water. Alerted by the splash, Courtney the dwarf west African crocodile left her basking spot and took to the water. Luckily for the unfortunate bird, animal curator Mike Bungard noticed the commotion and plunged a net into the pit to stop Courtney from attacking the pheasant, while lifting the confused bird to safety with a second net.

“Given just a few more seconds, and we would have ended up with a very well-fed crocodile, and one less endangered pheasant!” Mike said.

Found naturally in Vietnam, and one of the most critically endangered birds in the world, the hen pheasant seems none-the-worse for her ordeal, although she is noticeably more careful when flying around the glasshouses now.

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This entry was posted on Monday, April 7th, 2003 at 4:29 pm and is filed under Blog, Living Rainforest Blog.

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