Broody Turkey Interrupted

Discussion in 'Turkeys' started by AudieWarren, May 17, 2018.

  1. AudieWarren

    AudieWarren Songster

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    Free ranging in Ga
    So as the title states, my broody Turkey hen got ran off her nest. She had a nice quiet spot under our oakleaf hydrangeas. Not sure what ran her off, but it ate all but two eggs. I know turkeys are fickle. Do you think she'll try to sit the remaining eggs or should I go ahead and incubate them? She started sitting on mothers day. Also if she does sit, could I put more eggs under her? I'd hate to mess her up too much, but I was really hoping to watch her hatch a clutch.
     
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  2. sarcasm

    sarcasm Chirping

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    Chances are if something came and ate most of the eggs, it'll be back for the rest shortly (a couple days at most, depending on what it was).
    In my experience, if the hen is going to sit on the nest again she'll go back to it before dark.
    If you can restrict egg-thief access (remember snakes and rats are horrible egg thieves) to the nest, I'd incubate or toss the eggs she started with and give her a whole new batch to sit on, so that they all hatch at relatively the same time. It's been 4 days since mother's day, and I've had hens give up on pipped eggs less than 2 days after the first little one hatched. If you incubate the two that are left, you can just stick the babies back under her later (I suggest waiting until they're at least a week old, the mortality rate of new hatched poults free-ranging outside with their mother is staggering).
    If you can't effectively block outside critter access to the current nest site, I'd just collect the remaining eggs and incubate them, block access to the previous nest and encourage her to sit somewhere more secure. Large dog crates are fantastic turkey broody boxes, either the plastic-sided ones or wire ones with something wrapped around most of it to make it seem "private". You can put food and water in with them, and just open the door for a few hours each day for them to get out and exercise, relieve themselves, dust bathe, or whatever.
     
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  3. R2elk

    R2elk Free Ranger

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    It doesn't take much to get a turkey hen to abandon her nest. I would expect her to make a new nest rather than to return to a nest that has been found by a predator. You should just feel lucky that the eggs were all that was lost. It could have just as easily been the hen as well.
     
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  4. AudieWarren

    AudieWarren Songster

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    Free ranging in Ga
    Thank you. So the plan is to get a live trap and place it in her vacinity. I have a few eggs that I pulled out of my incubator that weren't "cooking" and I plan to use those as bait. The next step is to build a gated area around her nest site. That way she is secure, but still can get up and tend to business. I'm just hoping she will wants to sit. This is her first clutch.
     
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  5. AudieWarren

    AudieWarren Songster

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    May 17, 2018
    Free ranging in Ga
    I am feeling very lucky it was just eggs and not her. A possum got in the coop with my chicks and took out twelve in one night. That Possum is no longer a threat. I plan to secure her nest area and set traps for the possible culprit. I've seen her trying to clean her nest out. She's acting like she might want to continue sitting. This is her first clutch....mine too. I usually incubate, but I wanted to see her do it.
     
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  6. AudieWarren

    AudieWarren Songster

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    May 17, 2018
    Free ranging in Ga
    I just wanted to give an update!!! My turkey abandoned here pervious nest. Can't blame her. Well......... She made a new one!!!!! I'm tickled to death. I love seeing turkey poults. We hatched a couple over a month ago. About 2 weeks ago we purchased a crested legbar (we named her Turkey Mama) and 3 poults as a family deal. We put the few we hatched with them. Now they are a big happy family!! I love seeing her be a good mommy. Picture is my baby girl walking up to the poults in our garden.
     

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