Monday, November 19, 2012

Some Things I Know About Wild Turkeys

Since it's almost Thanksgiving, I thought I'd share some fascinating and informative things I know about WILD TURKEYS.

Wild Turkeys in my backyard during summer.

I've learned most of this information first hand, through careful observation of the flock (or rafter: see below) of wild turkeys that roams around my neighborhood.

So, on to the list.

Some Things I Know About Wild Turkeys

1. Wild Turkeys can fly!  
Domestic, cook-'em-up turkeys, do not fly.  But wild turkeys can and they do.  They don't fly great distances.  For instance, they don't migrate South for the winter.  But, with a burst of effort, they can fly from tree to tree.

2. Wild Turkeys sleep in trees.
In fact, the neighborhood turkeys are in the trees above my house RIGHT NOW!  I took these glorious pictures to prove it to you.  The first time I saw a turkey sleeping in a tree, I thought it was a giant vulture.  Then I saw 12 of them!  Luckily, I quickly figured out they were the friendly turkeys and not a gang of vultures leering down at me.

Wild Turkey in my oak tree.
See those dark blobs?  They're turkeys.  I swear.

Two blobs (aka. wild turkeys) in the tree above my house.
3. Wild Turkeys do indeed "gobble."
They make loud gobble, gobble, gobble sounds.  But they also make noises that sound like little squeaks and squawks.

4. Wild Turkeys are skinnier than Domestic Turkeys.
Wild turkeys are basically shaped like upside down light bulbs.  Skinny at the top and plumper at the bottom.

5. A group of Wild Turkeys is called a Flock or a Rafter.
A group of baby turkeys is called a Brood.  Just as an FYI, a group of crows is called a Murder.

A flock, or rafter, of wild turkeys.
6. Benjamin Franklin wanted our national bird to be the turkey.
In a letter to his daughter, Franklin wrote that the eagle is "a bird of bad moral character."  He continues to write that the turkey is a "much more respectable bird, and withal a true original Native of America."

So there you have it, some fascinating turkey information.  I will continue to monitor the local flock and let you know of any new developments.  For now, I just hope I count the same number of wild turkeys on Friday as I do tonight.

Recommendation:  Don't eat Wild Turkey.  Too skinny.  Buy the plump (free range) turkeys from the store!

Happy Thanksgiving!


  1. I learned the real life way that turkeys fly, when one flew into my mom's backyard. Being freaked out by birds, and especially large ones with huge talons, we hid in the house while my husband tried to shoo it away! It decided to fly off to better, less 'shoo-ing' yards.

    1. This is funny! I don't mind them from afar, but I wouldn't love it if one decided to fly right at me!