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Turkey coops?

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 

Hello,
This may be a very strange/dumb question but it's something I can't seem to locate. I am trying to find out what kind of housing turkeys live in. I would like to get a couple of turkeys in the future. I do have chickens and get a real kick out of them. For now they are pets. I don't have it in me yet to cull any at this point. I have 2 chicken coops and each small flock is let out each day to free range. I also have a horse and 3 dogs and they all get a long extremely well.

If I get a couple of turkeys I want to know if I make a big, ok, extra large chicken coop for them? I have to be realistic here, these birds are not small. If I do, do they roost like chickens and nest like chickens? I'm picturing all this on a much larger scale of course. I know my husband will find this post and be thankful no one can see who he is out of embarrassment. Hey, I tried looking up information on turkeys and didn't find any, nothing helpful of course. Not even on this board did I find out anything about turkeys housing.

Here is another question. Can you have more then one male turkey? Do you have to have a bunch of hens? Roosters don't get along when they are close together. You need a lot of hens for each roosters. Does it work the same for turkeys?

That's all the questions I have for now. I'm sure I will be back for more info in the future. Thanks

post #2 of 14

Hi!  Check out this rather comprehensive thread:  http://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=92240

There
is info on all things turkey there.

Though I think this link is in one of the messages in the thread above:  http://www.albc-usa.org/EducationalResources/turkeys.html

Depends
on whether you are looking towards getting a heritage breed or the Broad Breasted Commercials as to housing/feed/health/etc.

post #3 of 14

In gereral, your heritage breed will use elevated roosts.  The broad breasteds won't be able to get to high after they get big, especially the toms.  The generally nest on the ground, and you can provide them a box, and they might decide to use it.  They may or may not use the sheltersl  I have a hoop house for mine with roosts, and sometimes they use it,k and sometimes they sit on the fence.

Jen -   Buckeyes, and Japanese Bantams (for the most part) Working on a flock of barred Hollands.


 
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Jen -   Buckeyes, and Japanese Bantams (for the most part) Working on a flock of barred Hollands.


 
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post #4 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by crj 

Hello,
This may be a very strange/dumb question but it's something I can't seem to locate. I am trying to find out what kind of housing turkeys live in. I would like to get a couple of turkeys in the future. I do have chickens and get a real kick out of them. For now they are pets. I don't have it in me yet to cull any at this point. I have 2 chicken coops and each small flock is let out each day to free range. I also have a horse and 3 dogs and they all get a long extremely well.

If I get a couple of turkeys I want to know if I make a big, ok, extra large chicken coop for them? I have to be realistic here, these birds are not small. If I do, do they roost like chickens and nest like chickens? I'm picturing all this on a much larger scale of course. I know my husband will find this post and be thankful no one can see who he is out of embarrassment. Hey, I tried looking up information on turkeys and didn't find any, nothing helpful of course. Not even on this board did I find out anything about turkeys housing.

Here is another question. Can you have more then one male turkey? Do you have to have a bunch of hens? Roosters don't get along when they are close together. You need a lot of hens for each roosters. Does it work the same for turkeys?

That's all the questions I have for now. I'm sure I will be back for more info in the future. Thanks


Yes, turkeys need more run space too. And, they like higher roosts than chickens, but will roost on what is available if they're not high. My heritage turkeys fly to the top of the barn rafters (20 feet up) or even 40 feet up in a large tree, if they can. Inside the coop they roost 4 feet high on a 2x4 board. 

I assume you are looking for heritage turkeys since you are talking about breeding them. If you get the commercial breeds like Broad Breasted Whites, they cannot breed naturally (only with artificial insemination) and they only live 6-7 months at the most because they get very very large (too large for the oven). 

Heritage turkeys on the other hand, can live for years, can breed naturally and can fly high and like to have lots of space and higher spaces to roost. As for male toms, they are a bit different than roosters, in that mating is always hen's choice. The male turkeys are always "asking" and most of the time, the hens are saying 'no'.  But tom is always hanging around, just in case.
You can have more than one tom, they will establish an alpha order and may fight a bit, but in general I think they get along better than roosters once the pecking order fighting is over.

You can have as many hens as you want. You can also have just one hen and one tom, due to the "hen's choice" as I mentioned above. It is not like a chicken where you want a one to 12 ration of roosters to hens.

Hope this helps!  "Everybody loves a turkey!"  (thanks Steve)

Happy owner of 4 Buff Orpingtons, 4 guineas, 3 Black Langshan bantams, 6 Buff crosses, 1 OEG cross, 1 Maine Coon cat, and 4 Bourbon Red turkeys!
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Happy owner of 4 Buff Orpingtons, 4 guineas, 3 Black Langshan bantams, 6 Buff crosses, 1 OEG cross, 1 Maine Coon cat, and 4 Bourbon Red turkeys!
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post #5 of 14
Thread Starter 

Thank you all for your response. I did read the earlier posts but didn't get the information I was looking for. Steve, you filled me in very well. Thank you.

I really do like turkeys. Ever since I saw and heard them at the county fair I've wanted one. I love the sounds they make. I think there bodies are so cool but there faces and heads are ugly........ lol. so ugly that you can't help liking them. I do find that some have very impressive colors on there faces. Quite interesting. Don't get me wrong........ I really like my chickens but I find the turkey just as fascinating.

I am trying to plan out an enclosure for the turkeys for night time or even during the day. I haven't seen any coops for turkeys. Everything is for chickens. I just want to get an idea. I do not have a farm but I do have the space for a couple of turkeys. I don't plan on breeding but I wouldn't mind if I had a male and female that had offspring. I have yet to have a chicken hen go broody...... lol. Maybe this spring who knows.

Thank you everyone for your input.

post #6 of 14

Some people will tell you not to do this, but this is how I have done it every year for several years now. I keep my chicken and turkeys in the same coop, they roost together and everything. I started by getting them all as day old chicks and they grew up together. This year I added new ones and had more turkeys. They do just fine together, and they all free range together. There is one of my hens is always following around under the feet of the big tom. Cute really. And when the hen started laying her eggs, she just took over one of the nest boxes, and only let one of the chickens use it with her.
So yes, if you adjust for the size, everything is the same.
Oh, Ive had Broad Breasted Bronze, Bourbon Reds and Spanish Blacks, and one Slate hen. So the breed is pretty much what ever you want. Id say get them as chicks, make sure you feed them wild game chick starter, has a higher protein content, and you should do just fine. I think that have a few chicks helps the poults learn things, and then they all get along as they grow.

post #7 of 14

I'm building one of these before Spring...

http://i394.photobucket.com/albums/pp29/storypage/Turkeypen.jpg

"There are too many books in the world to read in a single lifetime; you have to draw the line somewhere." --Diane Setterfield, The Thirteenth Tale

 

What I'm reading now:  Aquaponic Gardening, by Sylvia Bernstein.

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"There are too many books in the world to read in a single lifetime; you have to draw the line somewhere." --Diane Setterfield, The Thirteenth Tale

 

What I'm reading now:  Aquaponic Gardening, by Sylvia Bernstein.

Reply
post #8 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Buster52 

I'm building one of these before Spring...

http://i394.photobucket.com/albums/pp29/storypage/Turkeypen.jpg


Spectacular!

thumbsup

NPIP Certified -115 Chickens, 19 Geese, 19 BR Turkeys, 7 Rabbits, 120 Muscovy Ducks , 9 Guineas, 9 Peafowl, 8 sheep, 1 Goat and currently have 100 broilers to be processed March 2014.  And it's broody/hatching season all over again for 2014.
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NPIP Certified -115 Chickens, 19 Geese, 19 BR Turkeys, 7 Rabbits, 120 Muscovy Ducks , 9 Guineas, 9 Peafowl, 8 sheep, 1 Goat and currently have 100 broilers to be processed March 2014.  And it's broody/hatching season all over again for 2014.
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post #9 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Buster52 

I'm building one of these before Spring...

http://i394.photobucket.com/albums/pp29/storypage/Turkeypen.jpg


I'm also thinking of getting turkeys and think the chicken coop might be too small for chickens and turkeys.  These plans look very nice, but I have a question before I build.  Do you have to worry about nighttime critters getting your turkeys?  We have possums and an occasional raccoon.  Would the turkeys be safe with just the roosts?  Can't the predators climb up to get them?  Our yard is fenced against dogs and big critters, but it seems like the smaller ones have no trouble climbing a six foot fence!

post #10 of 14

Yeah, coons and such can get your turkeys too.  sad

Surrounded by:  Geese, Ducks, Guineas, Turkeys, Pheasants, Chickens, Pigeons, Chukars, Quail, Doves, and an ever-changing array of hatchlings coming and going!
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Surrounded by:  Geese, Ducks, Guineas, Turkeys, Pheasants, Chickens, Pigeons, Chukars, Quail, Doves, and an ever-changing array of hatchlings coming and going!
Facebook:  Snoozin' Goose Ranch & Keester Eggs
www.snoozingooseranch.com
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