LIFE'S BETTER IN THE MOUNTAINS

Monday, August 15, 2011

Turkeys in the Grass

I am fascinated by wild turkeys and we are lucky to have many of them in our community.  Yesterday I started out our driveway and saw two turkey hens and at least a dozen or so poults.  They walked across the road.  I ran inside for my camera and got back in time to shoot a couple of rather poor photographs of a few of them before they disappeared into the woods on the other side of the road.













The wild turkey was thriving before America was explored.  Early in the sixteenth century explorers took wild turkeys from Mexico to Europe where they were successfully domesticated.  The domestic turkeys did so well that early English settlers brought them back to America.

In the nineteenth century turkeys were over-hunted and their habitat lost to settlers.  In the early twentieth century turkeys were eradicated in the north-eastern United States.  In the 1940s large re-stocking efforts put wild turkeys back.  Turkeys were captured in one area and re-introduced in another.  The turkeys thrived and are now found in every state except Alaska.

The females raise the poults with no help from the males.  Several females might live together and share the raising of the poults.

How lucky we are to see so many turkeys around our house.  they are fascinating to watch and delightful to listen to.

23 comments:

Carol@The Writers Porch said...

Carolyn...we love then too! They often come across our pasture and of course we always see flocks of them in Cades Cove. Those were good pics! Congrats on winning Vicki's galley!

Rudee said...

They don't come around the city, but my brother has them in abundance. Your pictures are wonderful.

Ms. A said...

Excellent photos and the scenery behind them is magnificent! I'd love to have that view... instead of my the concrete and nothingness of mine.

Ms. A said...

Oops, brain/finger disconnect. Meant to say, instead of the concrete and nothingness of mine.

Karin said...

Just wondering if your girls chase the turkeys when they seem them or if they nonchalantly let them pass! Lovely photos!

The Bug said...

I see them periodically around here - always makes me smile.

Busy Bee Suz said...

I agree....I love to see them in the wild.
It is pretty neat that the 'ladies' raise the babies with no man....Kinda like "sister wives"
xo

Sam said...

I've never seen one in the wild before - I don't think we have those in Arizona!

Sam

George said...

You got some pretty good pictures before they all disappeared into the woods. We have turkeys in our community as well, although they tend to stay away from homes.

The Thundering Herd said...

We seem to be almost overrun in wild turkeys this year - but still fun to see them everywhere.

Cicero Sings said...

I've never seen any wild turkeys in B.C. I don't think we have them.

kks said...

It always strikes me how skinny they are....compared to the farm raised birds for eating....
The little bulldog puppy from a couple posts ago went home and is doing well! So happy....
xoxo

robin andrea said...

Wonderful photos! We see turkeys here every now and then. I think the coyotes keep them away most of the time though.

Madi and Mom said...

What a beautiful and informative post. I saw my first wild turkey in Goshen, VA...they are quite comical and interesting.

Madi and Mom

retriever said...

Nice post i don'nt say that turkey have been eradiked,
greeting from Belgium, Nice your fotos

animal lover, quilt lover said...

I think your pictures are great, really great!! I would love to see some in real life but ever have.
Lucky you!!
xx, Fern & Tinker

troutbirder said...

We have them all over here now. I think Minnesota traded some bass for Missouri turkeys. The population has exploded and the spring turkey hunt is a big deal now. (Baron and I stay out of the woods then.) :)

Kathryn Magendie said...

One of the funny things that happened in our cove was we were driving down to go "to town" the day before Thanksgiving, and there were about ten wild turkeys just milling around some houses there - *laugh* - as if they ran out of the woods to make sure no one shot them (though they aren't supposed to be, I'm sure it happens!) . . .

That was the only time we've ever seen them that close to the houses down there -- we checked Thanksgiving day, and there they were again :-D

~Kim at Golden Pines~ said...

I didn't know this about the turkey--Only that Benjamin Franklin wanted it as the 'National Bird' and not the Eagle. They are very smart, but not nearly as regal!

I hope you are doing well and having a good week!!

Janie said...

Great photos of turkeys in the wilds of your back yard!

Janet, The Queen of Seaford said...

We have a lot of turkeys around here. Most will bypass our yard to get to the water, but the other day-----five of them walked across the front yard. Boy did the dogs go nuts!

Vicki Lane said...

We are blessed with a flock that calls our mountain home. They are truly magnificent birds.

NCmountainwoman said...

Thanks for your comments, everyone.

Carol - I have already finished reading the book!

Karin - Actually Lucy did chase one in the woods. It was rather frightening since the turkey didn't have a lot of clearance to take off and fly. Fortunately we did a "come" and Lucy came right back to us.

kks - The wild turkeys are much leaner than domestic. They have to be, since they need to be able to fly. Most domestic turkeys have had flight bred out of them.

Retriever - Glad you stopped by.

Kathryn - Too funny. Actually we saw turkeys in the yard the first Thanksgiving when we moved here. A bit strange to have a turkey on the grill and one in the yard.