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Jealous Turkeys??????

Discussion in 'Turkeys' started by duluthralphie, Jul 24, 2014.

  1. duluthralphie

    duluthralphie Sr Chicken Wrangler Premium Member

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    Jul 11, 2014
    Orrock township, Minnesota
    Is it possible for a turkey to be Jealous?

    JJ is his name being weird is his game.
    Ethel is her name and being a mother is her game.

    He is very social. When someone drives in the yard, He is right there to greet them and show off his body. He does not seem to notice he is missing half his feathers. and the other half are broken.

    (I got him this spring and he was in rough shape when I got him. He had been living in the city under a deck with lots of birds and his wings had been clipped. Now he free ranges and goes where he wants. Except at night, when I lock him in his bedroom!)

    He will walk with my wife, two dogs and I around are farm. He will come to the window of the house and yell for us to visit with him. We have two houses on the farm, we recently had workers installing cabinets in the other house. When they came he walked over to greet them. We had the windows open on the house and left the turkey outside, he spent a good hour circling the house gobbling and trying to find a way to get in with us. I tell you this to give you background on this fellow.

    I like to sit and watch my birds. I have a folding camp chair I keep near them, and will just sit in it and watch them from time to time. (read that to mean "more often than I should") I will bring them a few treats and throw them around me to bribe the birds to visit me. I then relax and have a beer.


    JJ has to be right there near me. He is usually strutting his stuff and just showing me how faithful he is. He never eats while I am there, that would be unseemly for him. However, Ethel comes running to eat. My turkeys live with chickens and 6 juvenile delinquent geese. Ethel becomes very jealous when the chickens come near me and runs them off. I know it is not the treats she is running them off from, as she will eat out of the same feeder as them all day. BUT when I am near a chicken she runs them off.

    I was carrying a chicken the other day and I set him down to run and join the others when Ethel came running from about 100 ft away and chased the poor chicken away from me.

    When I am feeding them treats she will let me scratch her head, under her neck and pet her. She also likes to sit in my lap during this time. When I am holding her she will not chase off the chickens, so I hold her a lot during my bird watching time. Is she jealous?

    Does she have a weird "play misty for me" thing going? Should I be scared?

    NOW the real problem, JJ gets jealous when I pet and hold Ethel. JJ would never submit to being held. He hates it! But, when I am holding Ethel he starts doing dances and foot stomping. He has a look of contempt in his eyes for me. He gets very, very close to me. If I set Ethel down he makes sure he gets between Ethel and I. He is constantly maneuvering to stay between Ethel and I.

    He will even try to mate with her while looking at me. The mating is so rough it borders on rape. I usually just leave when he starts to show signs of wanting to mate. It is too brutal to watch.


    Seriously, is there a danger to Ethel?
    Can he really be jealous?
    Just how many working brain cells does he have?
     
    shawluvsbirds likes this.
  2. blondi61189

    blondi61189 In the Brooder

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    Apr 2, 2014
    Coventry Pa
    When I was a kid I had a pet turkey who use to follow me sit next to me (let me dress him up in weird hats that I made lol) looking back on it he was a total sweetheart letting me torture him like that. But anyways one day I was petting one of the hens and had my back to him so of course he gobbled strutted stomped...but I didn't think any of it until he scratched me down my back :/ so yes turkeys can get jealous...as far as his behavior with Ethel and you....seems like he thinks he's the man and wants to make sure you know it.....i would not put her down because of any of his behavior, it will just feed his delusions of being over you lol and as far as the aggressive mating Idk if this is the "correct thing to do" but I have a few very aggressive "rapey" roos and if I see them being too aggressive I step in and interrupt them, I would imagine it would work for your turkey too.
     
  3. duluthralphie

    duluthralphie Sr Chicken Wrangler Premium Member

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    Jul 11, 2014
    Orrock township, Minnesota
    It is amazing something with 5 functioning brain cells can act like they do. Every bird seems to have a different personality.

    Even the baby turkeys are starting to show their personality. There is a young male that JJ should be more concerned about than me. Every time JJ gobbles the young one responds with that teenage gobble of his, which we laugh about because it sounds like a 13 year old boys bravado.
     
  4. blondi61189

    blondi61189 In the Brooder

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    Apr 2, 2014
    Coventry Pa
    Lol yes I know! I love my turkeys they all run up and cuddle with me whenever I'm out. (can't let then wonder anymore since a hawk got one last time they were out free :( but yea I think they're a lot smarter then people give them credit for
     

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