Envis Centre, Ministry of Environment & Forest, Govt. of India

Printed Date: Friday, August 23, 2019

Pheasent

 

 

 

Scientific name

 

Ithaginis cruentus Hardwicke

 

Common name

 

Blood pheasant

 

Sikkimese

 

Chillimey or semu

 

Distribution

 

Mountains of Nepal and Sikkim

 

Religious association

 

The blood pheasant is sacred to the Lepchas who are the aboriginal inhabitants of Sikkim. For the Lepcha hunter-gatherers of Sikkim, the blood pheasant is part of a sacred myth wherein the bird saved the Lepcha ancestors by guiding them to the safe environs of Mount Tendong during a terrible flood. The blood pheasant is the state bird of Sikkim.

 

 

Source: “Sacred Animals Of India” by  Nanditha Krishna (Penguin Book India, 2010)

Image: https://fryap.files.wordpress.com/2014/06/blood-pheasant-130430-107eos1d-fy1x5296.jpg