Posted by Happy Homemaker UK

I have been surprised by how many pheasants I see running around in the wild
Such colorful gorgeous birds in the countryside
with a very distinct call

Apparently the Common Pheasant (Phasianus colchicus) was first introduced 
by the Romans and Normans in the 10th century as a game bird, 
originating from Ancient Colchis (now Georgia).  
It became 'extirpated' (locally extinct) from most of the isles 
in the early 17th century due to over-hunting.

It was a rediscovered game bird in the 1830s, 
and has been reared extensively by gamekeepers ever since. 
Although 30 million pheasants are released annually, 
most survive less than a year in the wild. 
The Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust is trying to increase the wild population 
by researching improved breeding methods.

Hunting was formerly an elitist sport, and to an extent it still is
 of game birds, hares, and deer. 
Fox hunting has largely been made illegal. 
Many past Kings and Queens have been avid hunters; 
although Queen Elizabeth II does not hunt, Prince Philip does.

Fox in our backyard
Known for stealing shoes & scavenging rubbish bins

Which leads me to the interesting topic of UK gun control. 
With one of the strictest firearms legislation in the world, 
the UK has one of the lowest rates of gun homicides in the world. 
Handguns have been almost completely banned for private ownership. 
Police officers routinely do not carry a firearm.

Interestingly, even Great Britain's Olympic shooters fall under this ban, 
who can only train in Northern Ireland, the Channel Islands,
the Isle of Man, or abroad (namely Switzerland).  
Although the government granted special allowance 
for the shooting events for the 2012 Olympic Games in London, 
only 5 permits were given to Olympic British Shooters to train in Great Britain. 

- photos by me -
Source: Garden Birds, Wikipedia 123