Naturalist’s Corner – Turkeys!

Naturalist’s Corner – Turkeys!

Posted November 6, 2019

Written by Kyla Isakson

GOBBLE, GOBBLE, GOBBLE! Did you hear that? That was the sound of a wild male turkey asserting his dominance and warning other turkeys to stay away from his territory. Wild turkeys are native to North and Central America, and some have been domesticated to be raised on farms for food around the world. Wild turkeys can fly for short bursts close to the ground, but domestic turkeys cannot fly due to their larger size and shape. Wild turkeys typically run from danger, and when they are startled or annoyed, the skin color on their heads and throats can change within a minute from a calm grayish purple to vibrant red, white, and blue.

Wild turkeys spend their nights gripping branches in trees so that they do not fall while they are sleeping. They live in flocks, so trees can have anywhere from three or four turkeys in it, or up to dozens soundly sleeping on the branches. Like many New England residents, turkeys must brave the harsh winter conditions because they do not migrate to escape the cold. Keep an eye out for these tough birds in your neighborhood!

(C) Wareham Land Trust ~ provided by New Bedford Internet