Arthur or Martha? -- is my turkey a girl or a boy?

Discussion in 'Turkeys' started by justanotheramy, Sep 4, 2010.

  1. justanotheramy

    justanotheramy Out Of The Brooder

    Aug 26, 2010
    Figured that instead of horning in on CatJane0x0's "B White turkey -- lady or man?" thread, I should post my own.
    This is Rhonda... or is it Rodney? (it's difficult to photograph someone who's obsessed with shiny things, because mostly what you get is this...)

    Rhonda is 3 months old. She's a pet and I've never had a turkey before, so I don't know which of her behaviours are sex-specific, which are just turkey stuff, and which are just personal quirks.

    -- She's lively and curious and bossy and excitable.
    -- She vocalises a lot (almost constantly, as far as I can tell, but that might just be because I'm there to hear it): mostly a relatively quiet and fairly melodic warbling-muttering noise, with the occasional *pop!*/*bink!* when she's excited by something.
    -- She fans and struts a little when she's trying to boss the goose around or when the wild pigeons are mobbing her food.
    -- When a 12 year old friend of mine visits wearing a red shirt she puffs all of her feathers up, turns bright red, and starts advancing on him... but is never actually aggressive.
    -- The closest she gets to aggression (towards people) is that she gets very excitable and pecky around shiny things or when I'm trying to weed the garden (she gets really hyper and starts grabbing at my hands and wrists), but it's clear that it's excitement and not aggression.
    -- She usurped the goose's nest site to use as a dust-bath and daytime hang-out.
    -- She pulled all of the feathers out of the back of the goose's neck.
    -- She won't roost undercover at night.
    -- Her head and neck go an astonishing variety of colours and combinations of colours depending on her mood.
    -- She's growing a beard.

    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]

    So is this Rhonda? Rodney? Or is it still too early to tell?
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2010
  2. Nava

    Nava I Got The Naked Neck Blues

    Aug 2, 2009
    Ocala Fl
  3. momma's chickens

    momma's chickens Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 10, 2008
    I can't figure the sexes of my Royal Palms at all but yours is a Rodney! [​IMG]
  4. justanotheramy

    justanotheramy Out Of The Brooder

    Aug 26, 2010
    Is that mostly based on the beard and strutting? Because I've been reading that hens can do that too?
  5. jlwm

    jlwm Out Of The Brooder

    Apr 1, 2010
    Wow - am I learning a lot-your Rodney/Rhonda looks exactly like my two turks. I thought they were hens. . .
  6. chicks4kids

    chicks4kids Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 22, 2009
    Northern Indiana
    I would say Rodney due to the snood and wattle size. Plus his intense red face color. My male gets bright red and my females only gets slightly red.
  7. SaraF

    SaraF Out Of The Brooder

    Jul 10, 2010
    I'm sorry to say but She, is a he. by the way you say it acts and some of the photographs, it represents a male. females 'snoods' dont change sizes, heads dont go through color changes. females usually dont grow beards, or strut/fan out tail feathers. He is a very nice looking bird, but i would start calling him Rodney instead of Rhonda, he might get offended [​IMG]
  8. Frosty

    Frosty Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 30, 2008
    About 10% of females grow beards, but the snood is usually small and has fuzz on it, and the caruncles are smaller on a hen. I'm thinking it's a boy...
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2010
  9. Lagerdogger

    Lagerdogger Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 30, 2010
    Aitkin, MN
    I agree that its a tom. The snood and caruncles in the pictures are the strongest evidence. The beard and strutting are pretty good evidence (lots of hens will strut occassionally, but heavy strutting would be reserved for older toms). The head changing color with moods is not so helpful. All of my turkeys heads change colors in a flash depending on mood and excitement.

    I'm surprised he doesn't gobble. Maybe soon:D
  10. mypicklebird

    mypicklebird Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 8, 2008
    Sonoma Co, CA

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