Population fluctuations and habitat preferences of Ijima's Copper Pheasant Syrmaticus soemmerringii ijimae were investigated using a line transect method at two locations in southern Kyushu from 2002 to 2013. During the 12 years of the survey, transects were walked a total of 536 times (representing approximately 2,150 hours and a walking distance of around 3,590 km). The total number of encounters was only 127 birds, which represents one bird every 16.9 hours or 28.3 km. The number of birds encountered appeared to decrease steadily throughout the study period. The frequency of encounters was higher in evergreen and deciduous broad-leaved forests, and lower in mature cedar and cypress plantations. Therefore, it is suggested that increasing their preferred broad-leaved forest habitat would be an appropriate strategy for the recovery of the declining Ijima's Copper Pheasant population.
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Vol. 13 • No. 2