might buy a turkey

Discussion in 'Turkeys' started by chickatee, Sep 4, 2010.

  1. chickatee

    chickatee Out Of The Brooder

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    i was thinking about maybe buying a turkey to keep as a pet but have no idea about them. how long do they live? what food do they eat? etc...etc... thanks for any replys!
     
  2. thaiturkey

    thaiturkey Chillin' With My Peeps

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    That's a big question you're asking! Try browsing this part of BYC and, perhaps, do some Googling and buy a book.

    One thing that might occur to you as you do your research is that a single turkey might not be a happy one. They aren't like neutered poodles. [​IMG]
     
  3. jrsqlc

    jrsqlc Obsessed with Peafowl

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    I have rarely not found the info I need by doing a search!!
    If I cant find a straight answer, then Ill post and ask.

    As far as life span, that depends on breed!
    Same with feed.
    If its a BBW then it will grow faster than normal and are not bred to live long.
    Not one I would recommend as a pet, unless you plan to eat your pet in a short time and dont have a problem with the attachment part of it.

    I have kept standard bronze for a few years as pets, then smoked them for 10-12 hours and was great eating. My tom was so big we could only fit 1 leg, no thigh, in our oven. We also had to remove all the racks and buy the largest pan we could fit in the oven. That is why he went to the smoker!!
     
  4. Lagerdogger

    Lagerdogger Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Some short and simple answers:

    If you get a nice looking heritage bird, it should live 5 to 8 years or so. Maybe longer if your really nice to it.

    They eat a higher protein feed than chickens. Start at 28% to 30% protein for 1 to 4 months (you wil get a huge range of opinions on how long to feed the 28%), then lower to 22ish% until 6 to 8 months, then they can go on something lower once they're mostly grown. They will also supplement their own diet with bugs and things if you let them free range.

    Start-up mortality is probably a little higher than chickens, but the methods are essentially the same.

    They are a flocking bird, so get at least three or four. The will entertain you for hours!

    Get some books. You have to read with a bit of a myth filter. Some books make it sound as if you have to have a completely dry, sterile environment or your turkeys will certainly get blackhead and hypothermia and die slow painful deaths. I have found that these books make raising turkeys sound much more difficult than it actually is. But they are full of useful information on diets and housing.

    My suggestion is to read a little, then come back with a specific question. Read a little more, ask a little more. But don't let the books scare you off!! [​IMG]
     
  5. HallFamilyFarm

    HallFamilyFarm PA ETL#195

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    Last edited: Sep 6, 2010
  6. chickatee

    chickatee Out Of The Brooder

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    cool thanks lads. i will buy a book and do more reserch on them before i buy any! and before i posted this message i was looking up google but all the stuff i found was just about keeping turkeys to kill them and not keeping them as pets!
     
  7. Surehatch

    Surehatch Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have a pet turkey and I love him
     
  8. ericsplls

    ericsplls Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:I am also looking into raising some heritage turkeys. For the table and some to keep. I looked at the porter turkeys website. While the birds are beautiful are they not just a bunch of crossbred turkeys to create colorful offspring. Many of the colors of turkey he sales may reproduce both narragasent and royal palm offspring that will breed true. It's a little misleading but is their no difference in the two other than color?
     
  9. OmaBird

    OmaBird Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:I am also looking into raising some heritage turkeys. For the table and some to keep. I looked at the porter turkeys website. While the birds are beautiful are they not just a bunch of crossbred turkeys to create colorful offspring. Many of the colors of turkey he sales may reproduce both narragasent and royal palm offspring that will breed true. It's a little misleading but is their no difference in the two other than color?

    Most standard breed turkeys are exactly the same except for color. They are natural breeding, slow growing, long lived, long fertility and rugged. A few have standards that ask for a smaller turkey like a Royal Palm. But Many breeders like myself breed all turkeys for size for the table regardless what the standard says. I don't breed for show. Just because a turkey has written Standards do not mean that they are that size. Many colors are know longer to the size standards do to inbreeding. We need to increase there size by selection.

    Not all birds breed true because to get that color they need on one hetrozygous gene. When doubled they are a different color. A slate turkey is one example. It is not a mutt. It is a color and that just how that gene reacts in the homozygeous state.

    To me there is three types of turkeys, Standards, Broadbreasted, mini's.

    If you read the history of different breeds, they came from crosses, they where saved by being crossed and they will continue to to be crossed. There is no pedigree in standard turkeys that is being preserved if that what your asking. Example a Spanish Black is a Spanish Black regaless if it came from two slate hens or two black hens. Genetically there is also no difference.
     
    Last edited: Sep 6, 2010
  10. EggHunter_66

    EggHunter_66 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    This is the first time my husband & I have raised Turkey, we have two that were hatched out on June 11,2010..One is a Bronze as for the other we have no idea! We are enjoying them so much...more then we ever excepted!!! They get along with everyone in the yard...our 4 young Guienas adore them and follow them everywhere....lol.
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