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Considering turkeys…

Discussion in 'Turkeys' started by MedinaClucker, Jan 31, 2015.

  1. MedinaClucker

    MedinaClucker Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 30, 2013
    Hi All -
    I have a flock of 7 chickens already for eggs (so many eggs), and we're thinking about raising turkeys for meat. I know that turkeys and chickens need to be kept apart and that I'd have to be careful to make sure I didn't track one set of germs into the other coop. My question is: how far apart do they need to be? I have an acre, so I can put them about 150' apart if it was that serious. But I'm wondering if 30 or 40 feet would be adequate. Thanks!
     
  2. chknoodles

    chknoodles Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 31, 2013
    Middle Tennessee
    That part about keeping turkeys apart from chickens only applies to areas where Blackhead is prevalent. We live in southwest TN and this area does not have blackhead, so even tho we have turkey pens separate from our chicken pens, if we have to put a rooster somewhere temporarily, he goes in one of the turkey pens.

    Now on a side note...turkeys eat a crumble that is a bit higher in protein than what our layer feed is. Higher than necessary protein for a chicken can cause liver problems if fed over a long period of time, so any roosters "visiting" a turkey pen will only be in there for a month or so until we can get him moved. If it is a cockerel, the higher protein is OK for a little longer as he is probably still growing and can utilize the extra protein in his diet. Because turkeys and chickens SHOULD be fed different feed, it is often very difficult to put them in the same pen.

    Another point is that any aggressive chicken will NOT win if he challenges a full-grown Tom. In fact, we adopted a Rio boy that we adore from his previous owner when the previous owner's favorite Rhode Island Red rooster thought wrongly that he could take on a big turkey. The Rooster lived but Clyde got to move to our house.

    You can find out if your area has blackhead by calling your local agriculture extension office. If your area DOES have blackhead...the turkey pen cannot be put on any soil that has had chickens for 2 years...and I mean that by a coop and/or enclosed run, not that your chickens may have walked thru the area when free-ranging.

    Hope this helps. As for how far apart to put a turk pen from a chicken pen...I would just be sure that they do not share rainwater run-off as it is the chickens' fecal matter that causes the problem, not the chickens themselves.
     
  3. MedinaClucker

    MedinaClucker Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 30, 2013
    Thanks! That's exactly the kind of info I needed!
     

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