Each fall, some state wildlife agencies dump hundreds of thousands of non-native pheasants into the landscape for shooters. The pheasants are raised in barns and have no survival skills. If not shot, predators, exposure to the elements, or starvation kills the birds.
Pheasant stocking is a costly and cruel practice with no place in sound wildlife management.
Stocked birds grow up in a series of boxes and pens. Keepers sometimes cut off their beaks or put plastic "blinders" through their nose holes to prevent the crowded, stressed pheasants from pecking each other.
At some release sites, shooters wait in parking lots for trucks bringing crates of birds, or line up just before stocking to take the first shot.
Releasing pheasants from a truck at an announced date and time violates the fair chase principle that animals must have a reasonable chance to escape.
News & Events
February 9, 2015
You can help pass laws that protect animals in your state. Humane Lobby Day is easy, fun and guaranteed to make you feel like a powerful animal activist. We'll help you find the Humane Lobby Day in your state.
January 5, 2012
With the backing of our more than 1.2 million supporters in California, The HSUS is building relationships to ensure a sustainable future for the Golden State’s wildlife and habitat.
November 16, 2009
This week, The Humane Society of the United States, Humane Society of New York, New York League of Humane Voters and New York State Humane Association submitted comments to the New York Department of Environmental Conservation opposing the continuation of pheasant stocking.
November 2, 2009
Find out if your state allows pheasant stocking--cruelty at taxpayers' expense
August 16, 2016
Consumers today want to see humane treatment for animals in all spheres—including food, fashion, and entertainment. Through its work with corporate leaders in various industries, The HSUS is making sure that people know what they’re getting when they buy a ticket, a coat, or an egg—and helping the animals who are part of the system get a better deal.
August 3, 2016
HSUS lauds U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service for new rules protecting iconic wildlife in Alaska from aerial hunting, baiting and trapping on wildlife refuges
The Humane Society of the United States applauds the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service for finalizing a rule prohibiting cruel hunting methods on more than 76 million acres of National Wildlife Refuge lands in Alaska.
June 18, 2016
The Rhode Island Senate has passed a bill which will end the use of bullhooks on elephants in travelling shows and circuses.
April 4, 2016
In response to a 2012 legal petition filed by The Humane Society of the United States, World Wildlife Fund, Detroit Zoological Society, International Fund for Animal Welfare, Born Free USA, Big Cat Rescue, Fund for Animals and Global Federation of Animal Sanctuaries, the U.S. Department of Agriculture issued guidance making clear that exhibitors violate the Animal Welfare Act by allowing members of the public to handle or feed infant exotic cats like tigers, lions, cheetahs, jaguars or leopards.