Humane way to carry adult turkeys?

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by shaninsky, Nov 13, 2014.

  1. shaninsky

    shaninsky In the Brooder

    Sep 17, 2014
    Our Standard Bronze turkeys are going for processing next week. What is the most humane way to carry them from point A to Point B. I can't imagine carrying them by their feet like you do with chickens. Currently if they've roosted in the wrong place and I have to move them I just give them a big gentle bear hug and lift them but I can't imagine doing that with all of them in the light of day.
  2. chooks4life

    chooks4life Crowing

    Apr 8, 2013
    You can carry them by their feet as with chooks, but personally I reserve that for the most wild animals I have to handle, as a safety/control measure.

    All mine know that once I have them, it's best to just relax and bide their time, they will be released when I'm done. For that trust and patience it's important to make them feel secure.

    When I pick them up I place both hands over their wings, holding them to their bodies, and lift them, then tuck them under one arm or use one hand to hold them against my side and support their legs or feet if necessary with either hand, though mostly they will just relax and dangle them. Some chooks like their feet held.

    With turkeys, it's harder obviously, but I do a variant of the same thing, control the wings as you lift and hold the feet/ankles and hold them against your body. I often just wrap an arm around them on the perch, over and under them, and use the other hand to secure the feet. Takes practice and experience before they will learn they're safe and there's no need to struggle. Of course, it depends on the individual and some will never trust humans so will always struggle. Also, the more they are able to flap around once you've grabbed them, the more it reinforces this reaction. Best to control flapping asap.

    Best wishes.
  3. popsicle

    popsicle Songster

    I'm short, so if I were to have "carried" my turkeys by their feet/legs they would have been dragged along the ground. I would wrap them in a saddle blanket if I needed to carry the wilder ones.
  4. 11mini

    11mini Songster

    Aug 17, 2014
    Lake Stevens, WA
    Cull them, then carry from A-B
  5. slingshotandLAR

    slingshotandLAR Songster

    May 24, 2013
    We load our turkeys into dog crates...

    Night before I go in to the coop while they are on the roost. I use a old bath towel and gently walk up to them and drape it over their heads then wrap my arms around their bodies and pick them up, this pins the towel in place and they remain very calm.

    Then just put them in the crate one by one and that's it.

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