impeyanus (aka Impeyan Pheasant, Impeyan
Monal) The national bird of Nepal, the
alternative name of Impeyan comes from Lady
Impey, who first kept them in captivity.
The male possesses a wiry,
metallic green head-crest that is absent in other
monal species, as well as a chestnut brown tail,
light brown wings and a white rump that is
visible in flight. The head is bright green, the
eyes ringed with blue and the neck reddish brown.
At the nape is a yellowish patch which forms the
top edge of the bluish black wings and the
purplish black back. The breast is dark brown and
the tail feathers are light brown. Females are
much drabber, with overall dark brown feathers,
except for a white throat and rump patch, and the
bright blue circle around the eyes. Males average
22 to 25 inches in length, with females being
This species is found in the
Himalayas from eastern Afghanistan to western
China, into northeast India and southern Tibet.
It spends the summer on grassy slopes above the
tree line, and the winter in coniferous and mixed
forests with a high proportion of rhododendrons
and bamboo, but always above the 10,000 foot
The breeding season begins in
April. The male calls throughout the day until he
attracts a female. After mating the female
scrapes a nest in the ground and lays 3 to 5
eggs. The nest is usually located on a protected
raised ledge on south or southeastern facing
slopes of steep cliffs, but occasionally on a
mass of boulders. The female incubates alone, but
is guarded throughout the 27-day incubation
period by the male, who also helps guard the
chicks until they fledge. The young are
completely independent after six months, and can
breed by their second year.
The Himalayan monal uses several different
call types to express meaning to its mate, other
birds in its foraging group, or intruding birds.
Males generally associate in groups of two to
three, but are somewhat territorial during the
breeding season. In the winter females tend to
associate in groups of about twenty individuals.
Like many other members of the Phasianidae
family, the Himalayan monal uses its long, curved
beak to dig into the soil to uncover seeds,
tubers, shoots, berries, and insects. It is not
uncommon for them to dig up to a foot into the
ground in their search for food. Birds typically
forage in small groups.
genus & species Gallus gallus
Wildlife of Pakistan www.wildlifeofpakistan.com/Himalayan_Monal.htm
Questions or comments about