A) The answer is that, almost certainly, a hen pheasant was responsible. Even wild pheasants have a poor track record when it comes to breeding and it is not uncommon to find eggs dropped anywhere, even in other birds? nests, cuckoo- fashion. This habit also includes wild grey partridges, a practice that did not endear them to the old-time partridge keepers. I recall my grandfather, many years ago, fi nding a nest on Snettisham Beach with 40 pheasant and grey partridge eggs. This trait is not confined to pheasants and partridges. Over the years I have found starling, sparrow and mallard eggs all laid where the birds had been feeding.