Can I keep both of my toms If I get them enough hens?

Discussion in 'Turkeys' started by Little Red Birds, Jun 6, 2019.

  1. Little Red Birds

    Little Red Birds Chirping

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    BDD32389-FEE0-4043-A957-B756A8C00681.jpeg Hello, I am very new to turkeys and last year I bought six mixed breed poults, of which only ONE survived (the rest either 1. Ran onto the highway 2. Drowned themselves at 6 weeks old or 3. Stood in the rain and ended up freezing to death). Of course, the one that survived was a tom. At the time we got the second Tom though, we thought he was a hen. We traded four call ducks for the other tom, who is a 3 year old gorgeous royal palm. We love both of our toms and want to keep them but they are very aggressive to each other. Would hens fix the problem? If so, how many? Thank you!
     
  2. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Got my Puppy

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    Hens won't help with the aggression, and fighting amongst toms. Your toms will continue to fight. Mine do it multiple times a year. By the looks of yours you should keep them separately.
     
  3. Little Red Birds

    Little Red Birds Chirping

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    Thank you! I am thinking about getting rid of the royal palm. He is a beautiful show tom and we love him in the fall (seems to be the only time he isn’t aggressive), but the brown mix breed is my literal baby. When the royal palm bullies him he runs behind me thinking that I can protect him. Thank you again for your input!
     
    oldhenlikesdogs likes this.
  4. R2elk

    R2elk Free Ranger

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    Sure, you can keep both of the toms but you need to change your expectations of how you are going to keep them.

    The quickest way to get toms to fight each other is by putting a see through fence between them. Toms that are the best of buddies will fight each other when they are separated by a fence they can see through.

    I try to keep a minimum of 4 to 5 hens for each tom. During breeding season I separate the toms and their hens and attempt to make it so that the toms cannot see each other. If they can see each other, they will spend the day trying to fight through the fence rather than breeding the hens. If they are kept together with all the hens, there are hens that are going to get hurt and egg fertility may be low because they will each try to prevent the other from breeding the hens.

    If the reddish color in your Royal Palm's tail feather is natural and not discoloration from dirt, etc., he is not a Royal Palm and definitely is not show quality. Royal Palms are only black and white.
     
    Harmony Fowl likes this.
  5. Little Red Birds

    Little Red Birds Chirping

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    The discoloration on his tail was from dirt and as of right now they are roaming together. I had to put him in the fenced in area to treat mites from the previous owner and ensure no one else got them. They fight each other less when it is just them roaming the fields but when the chicken hens or male guinea join them they start to fight. Thank you for the information. We are going to be getting hens no matter if we get rid of one tom.
     
  6. cassiadawn

    cassiadawn Songster

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    I have two mature toms penned with three hens. They've worked out their pecking order, and virtually never fight anymore. They spend most of their time displaying at the hens. I DID remove one tom when I was introducing a new hen last year - I had the new hen penned next to the group, and moved one hen over with her for a week, then a tom as well for a couple weeks, then moved everyone back to the main pen. The dominant tom felt the need to put the other tom back in his place again (even though the other tom wasn't fighting back at all) and bloodied him a bit before they settled back down. They were within sight of each other, but being separated and put back together was enough to get the hormones going again.
     
  7. R2elk

    R2elk Free Ranger

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    It is really a bad idea to keep multiple toms with so few hens during breeding season. I have watched these lower position toms still knock the dominant tom off of a hen's back during a breeding attempt. It can end up badly for the hens involved. It can also be the cause of diminished fertility in the eggs from the toms spending too much time being concerned about each other rather than taking care of business.

    Separation for any length of time almost always results in pecking order disputes. Even hens that have been out of the loop while they are brooding will have disputes when they return to the general population.
     
  8. cassiadawn

    cassiadawn Songster

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    They've been penned together for 2 years now, year round, without issues. My non-dominant tom is VERY submissive to the dominant tom, which is likely why they can live together peacefully. I AM hoping next year I'll have the space to separate them during breeding season, but that's just so I know for sure who sired which poults.
     
  9. Little Red Birds

    Little Red Birds Chirping

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    I’m just having trouble finding hens...
     

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