Birdy Spotlight: Edward Pheasants

Written by Danny Buccelli, Animal Care Professional

This is a very special year for the Aviary Department as well as birders across the globe. 2018 marks the centennial signing of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act – many say it’s the most powerful and important bird-protection law ever passed. Every month, the Zoo’s Aviary team will spotlight a bird who needs our help. This month, we are showcasing the Edward’s pheasant.

The Edward’s pheasant is a beautiful pheasant species that is only found in Vietnam. Edward’s pheasant males and females can be differentiated by their appearance. The male is mostly dark blue with a white crest and the female is brown and lacks the white crest. The bird faces many threats, ranging from habitat destruction to hunting. Much of the forests in the species’ home range were destroyed due to herbicide spraying. Many biologists believed that the Edward’s pheasant was extinct until a population was rediscovered in 1996. Biologists quickly incorporated reserves to help as a last refuge for the species, but due to the harsh landscape in Vietnam’s fragmented forests and an increase in hunting pressures, there have been very few confirmed sightings of this species. The last time an Edward’s pheasant was physically seen in the wild was in 2000 – two males, a female, and four eggs were observed in Quang Tri, located in central Vietnam. As of 2012, the Edward’s pheasant has been up-listed to Critically Endangered by the IUCN Red List with an estimate of 50 to 249 mature individuals left in Vietnam.

Birdy Spotlight: Edward Pheasants - ZooTampa at Lowry Park

Here at ZooTampa, the Aviary Department partakes in a Species Survival Plan (SSP) for the Edward’s pheasant in hopes to help this critically endangered species. We currently have four individuals. Two of our adults live in our Australasia Aviary and actually had five chicks a couple of years ago! They were first time parents and did a wonderful job caring for their chicks. As part of the SSP, some of their babies now call other AZA-accredited zoos home. This helps build the population with the hopes of saving these incredible species from extinction. You can see our Edward’s pheasants in the Main Aviary and Australasia Aviary in Wallaroo Station.


Please review our booking tips before continuing

Outside Food & Drinks Policy

ZooTampa at Lowry Park offers a variety of delicious food for guests at several restaurants and concession stands throughout, but we understand that guests may need to bring outside food for special dietary needs. Acceptable and prohibited food items are listed below. For the convenience of our guests, there is a picnic area located outside the park near the main parking lot.

 Acceptable Items
  • Bottled water (max 20oz bottle, sealed) one per guest
  • Small snacks for young children
  • Baby food/baby formula
  • Soft-sided insulated bags no larger than 8.5” wide x 6” high x 6” deep (limit one per child)
  • Pre-purchased empty ZooTampa souvenir cups
  • Any food required for medical purposes and medically-indicated nutritional supplements
 Prohibited Items
  • Prepared or packaged food or meals
  • Alcohol
  • Glass or any open containers or water bottles filled with beverages
  • Hard-sided coolers of any size
  • Soft-sided coolers larger than 8.5” wide x 6” high x 6” deep
  • Suitcases and soft-sided bags with wheels larger than 24” long x 15” wide x 18” high

Prohibited Items

For the safety of our animals, guests and employees, the following items are not permitted to be brought into ZooTampa:

  • Any type of explosive or weapon
  • Knives or other sharp objects
  • Pepper spray
  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Marijuana
  • Illegal drugs
  • Straws
  • Clothing likely to create a danger or disturbance
  • Any hazardous items or materials

The following items are also prohibited to avoid blocking of walkways and/or trip hazards:

  • Segways
  • Hover boards
  • Two-wheeled scooters
  • Self-balancing electric vehicles
  • Shoes with wheels
  • Drones
  • Hard-sided coolers of any size
  • Soft-sided coolers larger than 8.5” wide x 6” high x 6” deep
  • Suitcases and soft-sided bags with wheels larger than 24” long x 15” wide x 18” high

Please leave any unnecessary articles secured within your vehicle to expedite your entry into the park.

We reserve the right to deny entry to anyone not observing Zoo Rules.

Pay For A Day Tickets

With a new Pay For A Day, Rest of Year Free ticket – for a limited time – you get unlimited admission through December 31, 2023 including access to our seasonal event series. Some blockout dates apply — see below for details. Not valid with any other discounts.

When does my Pay For A Day ticket expire?

For a limited time, new Pay for a Day, Rest of Year Free tickets are valid from the day of purchase until 12/31/2023 Pay for a Day, Rest of Year Free tickets which were purchased prior to October 1st, 2022 are valid until 12/31/2022.

What are the blockout dates?

3/11/23 – 3/19/23
11/24/23 – 11/26/23
12/26/23 – 12/31/23

Can I purchase a Pay For A Day ticket on a blockout date?

Yes! You can purchase a Pay for a Day, Rest of Year Free ticket for first-time use on a listed blockout date and have full access to the park on that day. Blockout dates apply to repeat visitation.

Can I use my Pay For A Day ticket on blockout dates?

If you already have your Pay for a Day, Rest of Year Free ticket and wish to visit during a listed blockout date, please stop by the Zoo’s ticketing windows for alternate options:

  1. During blockout periods, Pay For A Day ticket holders have access to significantly discounted single-day tickets.
  2. For a limited time from the date of purchase, Pay For A Day tickets can be upgraded to a Zoo Membership (with no blockout dates).
I purchased a Pay For A Day ticket online. How do I get my actual ticket?

Bring a copy of your confirmation (or show the confirmation email on your mobile device) to expedite entry into the Zoo. At your convenience during your visit you can stop by the Tours & Guest Services kiosk located just inside the Zoo to print your physical pass. No need to stand in line at the ticket windows. Walk right in!
Still have questions? Email us or call (813) 935-8552 ext. 0.