The Burmese Pheasant, or Yit, is a beautiful bird of silvery grey. When caught young and well fed they are capital birds for the table. They are easily tamed, and often become a nuisance, as their constant cry is very irritating, and as they wander in and out of the house and are off and on to the table even at meal-times. They are common in all hilly parts, but near Zeagoung they were particularly plentiful.
The Jungle Fowl is similar to those in Assam and over the greater part of India, but perhaps a little smaller. It is a game little fellow, and at times affords excellent sport. I used to take up my position on an elephant and have them beaten up towards me, and once or twice I found them as plentiful as pheasants in a preserve in England. Once on the wing, they are very swift and strong fliers, and require a good blow to knock them over.
Phayrea s Francolin is also a very handsome bird, something between a painted partridge and a black Francolin as found in Assam. It perches on trees, and its constant cry of a Kha-Ka-Kaha is to be heard every morning and evening along the right bank from Akoutoung and inland to the Yomahs, but it is not known on the Sittang side.
The Burmese, when they cut their paddy, leave a good deal of stubble, and I have had capital sport about November in the dried-up Dhan Kates, which were situated at the foot of some high land. When flushed, it rises perpendicularly for a considerable distance, and then flies off horizontally. If fired at as it rises, even the best shots are liable to miss it by firing beneath it; but if one waits until it commences its horizontal flight no bird is easier to kill. The Burmese keep these Francolins in cagesa why, I dona t know, as I never saw them used for fighting, which is so common in India.
Corn Quail are not plentiful in Lower Burma, but I have shot some there, and in the islands in the Irrawady going towards Pagan. The Button and Rain Quail are very plentiful in the season, and afford good sport. It is best to use only very small shot, and not too much of it, or of powder.
Of the Plovers, the golden and the grey are the only ones worth shooting, but the Peewits are very annoying when one is after big game, as they hover about screeching out, a Pity to