Anyone free range on ALLOT of land?

Discussion in 'Turkeys' started by iajewel, Jul 28, 2011.

  1. iajewel

    iajewel Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 22, 2008
    Corning IA
    I have a feeling this is just another of one of my great ideas I may wish I would have never thought of.. but...

    I have 30 acers fenced with woven wire. I have a dog that stays with my poultry and does protect them. I have shelter.... sooooooooooooo
    Please play devils advocate here and tell me what can go wrong if I get allot ( thinking 50) of turkeys and let them run on 30 acres? Will they damage the ground for grazing? What will the effects be to my hay ground? Can they survive that way with a pole barn as there are no trees?
    Thank you for any trouble shooting befor I do something stupid..... again.....
     
  2. LarryPQ

    LarryPQ Easter Hatch!!

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    Jul 17, 2009
    Ummm...I had 10 turkeys (now up to 18) free-ranging on my half acre. But I give them feed & scraps too soooo....

    I wouldn't let them in my garden though. I KNOW they can cause damage when they want to.
     
  3. iajewel

    iajewel Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 22, 2008
    Corning IA
    Im not saying I won't feed them.. Im asking if allowing them to free range in that much space is smart, or stupid
     
  4. jasonm11

    jasonm11 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nov 18, 2010
    tioga tx
    If you put them out do you plan on feeding them or just letting them loose to make it on their own? If you buy them as day old and raise them they will always need supplimental feed. They will be at risk to predators and may or may not be smart enough to get out of the tractors way when you are mowing. Have fun [​IMG]
     
  5. iajewel

    iajewel Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 22, 2008
    Corning IA
    Please read.. Akbash guard dog, and "Plan to feed"
     
  6. LarryPQ

    LarryPQ Easter Hatch!!

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    Jul 17, 2009
    Well, a lot of turkeys can do damage to a small area, but it sounds like 30 acres is plenty of ground for them to spread the damage around.

    Predators are going to be your big issue---your dog won't be able to protect 100% of the birds 100% of the time.
     
  7. iajewel

    iajewel Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 22, 2008
    Corning IA
    How do people like Reese and Porters do it? don't they have allot of birds on open land?
     
  8. Randy

    Randy Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 12, 2009
    AR
    How tall is your fence? If it's not real tall they can go over it with ease.
     
  9. ivan3

    ivan3 spurredon Premium Member

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    Jan 27, 2007
    BOCOMO
    Randy wrote: How tall is your fence? If it's not real tall they can go over it with ease

    If there are big trees adjacent to a 12 ft. fence, they'll fly into the trees and bye-bye.

    If I was thinking about using all the land, with that many turks, I'd get them as day olds and keep them fenced in for most of the day for at least 6 months. They need to imprint on owner/shelter/food location. I'd then let them range, but would expect losses from airborne preds in particular. If they aren't `fixed' to place, instead of getting nervous and clustering together when their wild cousins show up (pic below), they might decide that being fenced in isn't for them.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jul 28, 2011
  10. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD Premium Member

    If they are not the broad breasted type, I would fear they would jump the fence and wander off. Else, if they are anything like the fat thanksgiving turkies I had, they acted much like the chickens staying close to home where there was food and water.

    I fences range my chickens and they rarely leave visual sight of the house/coop so stay within the cleared part of our acres. They tend to destroy gardens if they jump the garden fences, and dig up their favorite spots around buildings.

    If your turkies don't run away per se by jumping fences and stick near home, I would not worry about letting them "free range" since your acreage is technically fenced in anyway.
     

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