Let's talk turkey...

Discussion in 'Turkeys' started by llombardo, May 25, 2019.

  1. llombardo

    llombardo Crowing

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    I'm interested. Educate me.

    Do they need to be in pairs?
    Can they live with chickens?
    Can they live with ducks?
    Do they roost?
    How much sq footage do they need in coop and run?
    Will boys Attack like a rooster might?
    Can they eat an all flock type food?
    Do the girls lay daily or how often?(not really concerned about eggs--just interested)
    If there is a rooster in the flock--will it try mating? Can it hurt the turkey?
    Same questions above if male duck is involved?
    Will male rooster fight a male turkey? Male duck fight with a male turkey?
    How do they do in the winter?
    Are they loud?

    I feel like they can be sweet birds and I want to learn about them and maybe get a couple. What breeds are gentle sweet souls?
     
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  2. Molpet

    Molpet Crossing the Road

    need at least 3 hens for a tom
    mine live with chickens and i wish they didn't..have killed 2 roosters and almost squashed a hen trying to mate it
    don't know about ducks
    yes they roost, as high as they can... if you don't watch them they will be up in the trees or on your roof
    they need 10 sqft in coop and 100 sgft in the run
    They can floggy you and jump on you, mainly if they don't see you as a person but a flock member, poor nutrition or they are just a jerk https://www.hybridturkeys.com/en/news/aggressive-behaviour-nutrition/
    Adults would do well on allflock, younger need gamebird or turkey food
    they are seasonal layers spring through fall. will layer 5-7 eggs a week
    If a rooster tries to seduce a turkey he will regret it.
    If a Rooster tries to fight a tom he might not live to regret it.
    Adults do great in the winter
    they can be loud
     
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  3. llombardo

    llombardo Crowing

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    So two girls it is...lol

    So two girls it may be..
     
  4. R2elk

    R2elk Free Ranger

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    Hen turkeys are far more likely to take issue with roosters than the toms are. Of course if a very large rooster, the tom may feel the need to get involved which can end up badly for the rooster.

    There is at least one member that has a drake Muscovy that will attack turkeys.

    Turkeys needing to be dry and ducks preferring to be wet and muddy does not make for a good match.

    If you just want a couple of turkeys for pets, get a couple of hens. Of course if you are buying poults, you will not get them sexed.

    By all means, get a heritage variety and avoid the heartbreak of losing broad breasted turkeys at a young age.
     
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  5. EggSighted4Life

    EggSighted4Life Free Ranging

    So... I ended up with 5 Bourbon Red poults surviving shipping.

    I currently suspect only one will mature into a hen, if behavior is any indicator of gender.

    Does that mean that I should plan to process all my toms when the time comes or is it *feasible* to keep a pair to get started?


    Should I anticipate issues with a tom (or hen) going after my dogs or mini pigs?

    I plan to use separate pastures for chickens and turkeys.. if I can keep the turkeys on their own side of the fence.

    @llombardo it's also important to check with your local ag department and find out if black head is of concern in your area.

    Is there any way to convince turkeys to roost in a coop at night? :pop
     
  6. Molpet

    Molpet Crossing the Road

    Mine go into the coop at night because I am out there an hour before sunset knocking them out of the trees. I have several 10" lengths of PVC near the various trees and coops they try to roost on.
    If I feed them at that time ,in the coop, they will go in if they are hungry. Right now I have poults and broodies that need food available, so they aren't hungry. One broody with 3wk old poults is trying to get them to roost in the trees
     
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  7. R2elk

    R2elk Free Ranger

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    Young hens can be just as rowdy as young toms and can even be at the top of the pecking order until the most dominant tom takes over later.
    As long as there are no hens around, toms can get along in a bachelor group. If there are hens around, it is best to have the tom situation sorted out before breeding season.
    That will depend on the individual turkey and the individual dog or pig. As long as the dog and pigs stay away from the turkeys, there should not be any conflict.
    It helps to keep turkeys inside their own area if the fence does not have a top rail or bar. Fences that are built with a top rail or bar are inviting perch sites for turkeys. Once up on the top bar or rail, they will almost always get down on the wrong side of the fence. It also helps if the fence is at least 6' tall and there aren't any enticing perch sites near the fence such as trees.
    Turkeys can be trained to go in a coop at night. It helps if the inside of the coop is big and high with desirable perch sites.
     
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  8. R2elk

    R2elk Free Ranger

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    I assume that you meant 10' (feet) and not 10" (inches).

    I am sure that you know that 3 week old poults roosting in trees would be considered a smorgasbord by a number of different predators.
     
  9. Congrats! I just saved what little sanity i had by reading this thread and deciding against a couple of turkeys!
     
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  10. Molpet

    Molpet Crossing the Road

    LOL yes ten foot poles

    I figure the GHO would eat a hen and use the poults as dessert, if they didn't share with the racoons.
     
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