Discussion in 'Turkeys' started by michael94, May 27, 2008.

  1. michael94

    michael94 Chirping

    Jul 5, 2007
    Can anyone tell me if I let my turkeys and chickens in an area where my garden is will they consume everything I have in it?[​IMG]
  2. amysue2012

    amysue2012 Songster

    Oct 6, 2007
    Montpelier Ohio
    Depends on how much other grass and plants they have range in. When I let mine out in the yard they sometimes go to the garden but I've never noticed any damage.
  3. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD

    I fence off the garden areas... what they don't eat they will dig up... kind of how they prefer the front porch steps when they have as far as th eye can see to go roaming...
  4. sBrickmanHouse

    sBrickmanHouse Songster

    Feb 10, 2008
    Don't know about turkeys, but the chickens definitely will, and what they don't eat, they'll scratch around, dig up, and step on.

    The good news is, at least in my experience, it doesn't take much to keep them out. My birds have plenty of room to roam (21 of them on an acre), so just a two foot fence around the planting beds is enough to keep them out.

    Obviously they could hop right over it if they wanted to, but that small barrier seems to be enough to turn their attention away to the rest of the yard.
  5. SueNH

    SueNH Songster

    Feb 24, 2007
    They will eat, scratch and taste test just about all of it. Even potato plants and tomato plants aren't immune.

    Turkeys are even worse than chickens when it comes to eating things. Bigger size and being native to the north makes you eat what you can when you can.

    I have dust bath holes that are knee deep in my yard from turkeys.

    They have plenty of room. I've got 20 acres and my nearest neighbor is a mile away. Surrounded by state owned lands and they still eat my plants.

    There is a fence around the garden.
  6. RoyalHillsLLC

    RoyalHillsLLC Songster

    Mar 5, 2007
    NW Louisiana-Vivian
    I have noticed that the most damage is when the garden is young. I successfully raise corn, yellow squash, cucumbers, eggplants, melons, irish potatoes, and more with freeranging chickens and ducks. The biggest issue I had this year was with rabbits eating the corn while it was small. I recommend either keeping them out of the garden while the plants are young (corn needs to be about 12 inches tall) or just fencing them out completely. So far my strategy has been to plant twice as much as I need and it has worked great for me.
    On my tomatoes and squash last year the chickens did a great job of keeping the bugs off of them. First year I didn't have to spray at all. of course, there was peck marks on some of them, but I didn't care about the looks, I was eating them, not selling them. i tried unsuccessfully to grow peas and beans. chickens will eat them.

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