Royal Palm

Average User Rating:
3.625/5,
  • Breed Colors/Varieties:
    Standard Black, Blue, Brown, Red & Slate
    Breed Size:
    Large Fowl
    The Royal Palm was recognized in 1971 by the American Poultry Association. Enoch Carson is largely credited with the first Royal Palms in the 1920s coming from a mixed flock of Narragansett, Black, Bronze and Wild turkeys. The Palm is similar to the Collwitz, Black-laced White or Pied turkey that has been in Europe since the 1700s. The Royal Palm turkey is listed as critical on the American Livestock Breeds Conservancy's watchlist.
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  • Breed Details:
    Royal Palms are normally not used for meat production with young toms averaging 16 lbs and hens 10 lbs. It is usually kept for small household meat production and for exhibition due to it's striking appearance. Many breeders of the Royal Palm refer to the birds as "eye candy". Only the black and white pattern has been recognized but other Royal Palm patterns have been produced, replacing the black with blue, slate, red or brown. Palms are generally white with metallic black edging on the feathers. The tail is mostly white with a band of black almost to the end of the tail with white tips. The saddle is black, coverts and wings are white with a narrow black band. The breast feathers are white with black tips. The Palms have a red to bluish-white throat, wattles & head, a black beard, light brown eyes and a light horn beak. Royal Palms are good fliers, forage well but can be flighty. The toms are generally non-aggressive and the hens are usually good mothers.

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    Rooster
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    Hen
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    Egg
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    Chick
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    Adolescent
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Recent User Reviews

  1. Country Marans
    1/5,
    "Will not be getting another"
    Pros - Pretty, flashy, never actually flogged me
    Cons - chicken killer, tended to 'wing beat' humans
    Bought two of these from Cackle, one died a mysterious death in the brooder, and that should have been my first clue. The one that survived never stopped strutting, all year long. He was pretty for about a year, and then something happened. I found a dead hen in the house, obviously from cannibalism, so I bought some pick-paste, made sure to loose the birds early every morning, kept their feed and water full ect. But it kept happening. The rooster seemed to defend the hens, but when he died from a raccoon break-in, everything just went downhill. The last one standing was the turkey. Then he took to pacing the fence, wondering where everyone had gone! I have had turkeys before, but had never had a single problem with cannibalism. However, this has boosted my enthusiasm for Turkey Season.
    Overall:
    0.5
  2. surprisebaby03
    4/5,
    "Amazing Turkey!!"
    Pros - Sweet, Pretty , and calm
    Cons - Can be bossy, and bossy about her eggs
    Royal Palms are great I really don't have anything bad to say about them. They can be a little bossy to other birds by chasing. They get along with mostly anything or anyone. I would 100% buy another Royal palm turkey. Hope this helped!
    Overall:
    4.5
  3. Indyshent
    4/5,
    "Skittish, sickly, pretty"
    Pros - Pretty, relatively non-aggressive, chivalrous for the most part
    Cons - Prone to sinus problems and always seems to be sick or injured
    I bought a 1-yr-old Royal Palm tom from a BYC member, but it turned out that he was horrendously ill. He escaped quarantine after a few days of rigorous antibiotic treatment, and finally (weeks later) seems like he might be more or less recovered (we had to find where he was roosting and continue dosing him nightly). We named all of our turkeys this year for dragons, so his name, due to respiratory issues, is Puff the Magic.

    Puff's about 3ft tall and at most 10lbs. His lovely plumage is starting to come back in (former owner tore a bunch of it out when the luckless boy tried to escape as he was changing hands). He is a very pretty bird. After raising only broad-breasted birds, he seems almost more like a flamingo than a turkey to me [​IMG]He has such delicate features--especially his long, skinny legs and toes! He's like a pianist trying to mack on body-building drummer babes. We have roosters who are bigger than this tom. Reportedly, Royal Palm's clean like giant old flat-chested hens, so it's a good thing we didn't buy him for his ample muscles.

    Hopefully, he'll be able to get his manly duties done with our three pet broad-breasted hens because they're antics trying to make baby turkeys are pretty noisy, pathetic and sadly funny all at the same time. He's largely ignored their attempts to get his attention, but as he feels better, he does seem to be taking more of an interest in them (but now they don't know what to make of him). We're hoping that a crossbreed will have merit as a table bird, lawn ornament and pet while having a slower muscle growth and (typically) better health of the Royal Palm.

    His personality does seem to be coming around as rather friendly, but he wasn't handled since he was a chick at his previous home, and likely distrusts us given our insistence at shoving needles into his chest and sinuses. Thankfully, table scraps, bread and pancakes, along with liberally loving on the other birds and speaking in soothing tones around him seem to be helping a great deal, and he now gets within a few inches of my outstretched hands. Within a few weeks, he might even take treats from my hands, which is pretty quick progress considering the circumstances.



    ***Royal Palms--even ones in poor health--can beat you pretty badly with those wimpy looking feet and wings***

    ***They can also FLY***

    *Just something to keep in mind*
    We've found that, while he does sometimes fly over the fence, he won't be gone long (if he can help it) because the other turkeys can't fly, and he can't bare to be alone.
    Overall:
    4
    Purchase Price:
    40.00
    Purchase Date:
    2015-09-27

User Comments

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  1. neopolitancrazy
    Where did you buy your Royal Palms? I want friendly, calm ones.
  2. neopolitancrazy
    Where did you get your Royal Palms? I have found temperament to be largely strain-based, so want to find calm ones.
  3. Sydney Acres
    Oh my gosh, Indyshent, you've got a heart like mine! I got started on this whole poultry adventure 16 years ago after being given a single broiler chicken (really long story) as a three day old chick. It turned out to be a hen, and through lots of special care she was able to live a very comfortable and pain free life over more than 6 years. She was the most treasured pet I have ever had! She also was a great layer for the first 3 years, then only 3 eggs her forth year, then quit. Was quite vigorous until about 3 months before she died, when she aged quite rapidly. There were lots of details to her care, but free ranging in a large yard and very limited, very small meals were the most important reason that she lived as long as she did. I never allowed her to get over 9 pounds, and tried to keep her below 8.5 pounds, although she really wanted to be much heavier.

    It sounds like you've got a great plan for moving forward with your hens. I love the way you reasoned everything out, with the hens' welfare being a priority. I hope your girls do as well as my broiler hen did, and have a long, happy and comfortable life, with lots of little Midget White poults hatching out (you are essentially recreating the breed by using a RP tom over commercial hens).

    If you find that the hens get their back plucked and scratched accidently by the tom treading, which can happen regardless of male size, and is more likely to happen with a commercial hen because they are feathered for easy plucking, I have had great results with this turkey saddle: http://www.strombergschickens.com/p...s-for-All-Poultry/Poultry-Medicine-Accesories

    It fits turkeys better that the traditional chicken saddles, and the large saddle is sized for the commercial hens. Plus, toms spend so much time treading on the hen's back, compared to roosters on hens, that the little U-shaped rope that is sewn onto this saddle helps prevent him from slipping. Slipping toms can easily tear open the sides of turkey hens.

    Again, hope your hens have a long and wonderful life. It sounds like they've got a great start.
  4. Indyshent
    I never said the breed isn't supposed to be small; I knew that when getting him. They're also (on the whole) resistant to many ailments which quite commonly afflict BB breeds, which is part of why I thought an RP would make a good tom for my girls.

    The BBs are pets who desperately want male companionship and babies; that's the biggest reason I got him, after a great deal of research on his breed. Prior to my purchase of him, he was a strictly free-range bird over several acres (which obviously didn't keep him from getting sick). I needed a man for them who would:

    1. Be good around children. RPs have famously non-aggressive temperaments.

    2. Never be able to break the backs/necks/hips/legs/etc of my hens. My girls are pets. I love them. My family loves them. BBs on the whole are very prone to major bone injuries, particularly from mating. An RP is long/tall enough to "get the job done" over a very large hen but not heavy enough to maim my girls. RPs are the only breed with this specific necessary trait because all other breeds will eventually get heavy enough to maim my girls or (in the case of the Midget/Beltsville Small White) are not long/tall enough to cover a BB hen successfully.

    3. Be able to mate naturally

    4. Have long, healthy, happy lifespan

    5. Have slower growth, slower maturation times, less stupendous muscle growth at the expense of other organ systems.

    I want to be able to raise the offspring and know they have a higher chance of being healthy, sustainable birds. BBs are not "natural" as breeds go. They cannot continue existing without the aid of humanity. They're sweet birds, but all of that muscle comes at tremendous cost to their bodies, particularly to their fragile skeletal systems, but also to their immune and nervous systems.

    I had wanted to get into Midget Whites but never found poults this year. All of my heritage hookups had problems this year (Breeder's Bourbon Red tom killed his mate; MW tom died suddenly from poisoning, and all the gals wanted to incessantly brood on golf balls.). The BBs were got as pets that might become dinner if they didn't get along with everyone or had health problems warranting being put down. I'm in love with turkeys, pretty much. This year, we acquired one tom and three hens as day-old unsexed poults. The tom suffered a grievous injury from which he would not be able to ever walk again, so we had to put him down. The girls started laying pretty well, and... we're just too darned attached to them.

    All of my birds get my entire backyard to roam. For BBs, they're in great health and happy. Industrial meat turkeys (and chickens) actually lay a large amount of eggs for their respective species (industry requirements for breeding flocks), but I've heard RP hens are the egg-laying machines of the turkey world. I'd like to strengthen the RP breed someday due its critical state. People just aren't as aware of turkeys as a species; we think of them of Thanksgiving and lunchmeats, which is...
  5. Sydney Acres
    Royal Palms are not inherently sickly birds. You just got one that happened to be sick. They are the smallest of the SOP heritage turkeys, so his small size, especially compared to your broad breasted hens, is to be expected. Also, he may be smaller than normal, considering that he is/was sick. Turkeys don't typically breed this time of year, so while you may or may not see some flirting or even breeding behavior, you probably won't see fertile eggs until late winter/early spring. Broad breasted hens are famously difficult to get fertilized through natural mating (all commercial hens are bred through artificial insemination) due to their size, and possibly other factors, so expect your fertility rate to be low, or possibly even zero, even if he does his job well. There are always exceptions though, so you may be lucky. If you don't get fertile eggs from your group and you want to breed small but meaty turkeys, you might consider getting some Midget Whites. They were developed using the smallest of the commercial broad breasted birds mated to the meatiest of the Royal Palms, and selected over generations to eventually breed true. They are rare now, and not in the SOP, but there are still several breeders and a few hatcheries that offer them. Good quality stock are healthy, long-lived, mate naturally, very fertile, prolific egg layers, have excellent temperaments, and won the taste test as the best tasting turkey breed some years ago. Because there are no SOP guidelines, breeders are not consistent in the birds that they produce, but most breeders are developing an 8-13 pound hen and a 13-20 pound tom.

    I would totally disagree that the heritage breeds are more difficult to raise to adulthood than the broad breasted hybrids. In general, the heritage breeds are healthy and produce both eggs and meat for many years, whereas the BB birds grow too large too quickly, have great difficulty reproducing naturally, and rarely live more than 1-2 years without special care. However, the heritage turkeys and the wild turkeys do require different management, as they become quite stressed in close confinement or poor quality diets, and stressed birds become ill easily. They need a lot more coop space, and thrive with free ranging. The hens usually require wing trimming if being kept in an uncovered pen, or free ranged within a fenced area, as they can easily fly onto the roof of a two story house with simply a flutter of their wings. The toms are also excellent fliers but just want to stay with their hens, so no wing trimming required for the boys in most cases, as long as the girls are trimmed. While technically the same species, the heritage and wild turkeys are very different birds compared to the broad breasted hybrids, and cannot be managed the same way. They are not sickly birds at all, but I could see that they might become ill if someone raised them the same way that the BB are often grown.
  6. RezChamp
    He's Purdy.
    I'Ve had Red Bourban, Black, Eastern Wild, Narragansett, Standard Bronze & BBB. I've found the BBB easiest to raise to adult hood. The others and more especially the Eastern Wild were more delicate. It seems the more "primitive the breed the more need of natural parents.
    My birds are not pets even though my wife disagrees with me. I dislike but am not totally above converting them to roasts, soups and other dishes but my wife seems to think that there is no need to keep 50 birds over winter other than "....they're just your pets!"
    Yes are they not (even with their snoods and ?carruncles?) such gorgeous creatures.
    I still want RoyalPalm and will one day.
  7. N F C
    It sounds like he has a good home now. Royal Palms are such pretty birds, hope his health continues to improve!
  8. Theofire88
    Very helpful, looking for a meat bird. Our breeder has Royal Palms, Bourbon Red's and Chocolates. Haven't looked into the chocolates yet. Bourbons looking the best. Your opinion's? Thank you for an honest summary, so many people are trying to make them out as meat birds.
  9. PalmRoyal
    Unfortunately, that is one of the problems with very tame turkeys. All of the hens, we have to clip their wings to keep them from flying onto houses and into neighbor's yards. So that makes them especially vulnerable to predators. So when we are not home, we lock them up in their enclosure. However, if anyone is ever looking for a pet, I always suggest buying a Royal Palm that was socialized. And, in my opinion, the toms make better pets than the hens, so there is always a market for both genders.
  10. winteree
    soo cute but not in my neighborhood. i could see some dog jumping the fence and killing him :'(

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