My Tom kills snakes!?

awilde20

In the Brooder
8 Years
Aug 9, 2011
19
0
22
So, this year alone, my tom has killed 4 snakes. I go to the pen late in the evening, and there will be a dead snake hanging in the fence. He doesn't even let them get fully in! Has anyone else ever had a turkey do this? I know he's a pretty tough guy, but it amazes me!
 

ColbyNTX

Songster
10 Years
May 2, 2009
1,745
8
161
Woods, TX
That's one of the reasons I first got turkeys! I actually like snakes but my wife hates their guts & livers. We do have a big copperhead population and 2-3 times a summer they would be in the flower beds or porches but since we have had free range turkeys, no more snakes! I have about 20 that free range and they do a great job at keeping the snakes away. I only find about 1-2 chicken snakes in the barn per year when they were 1 per week before turkeys & guineas.
 

Arielle

Crowing
8 Years
Feb 19, 2011
16,722
638
411
Massachusetts, USA
We have an unusual number of garter snakes; they are harmless, but they truely are every where and I have to be careful not to step on the poor things ( I like snakes) so I figured the turkeys could reduce the number of freeloaders that feed on the unusual number of earthworms that inhabit our farm. (Must be all the horse manure and few pesticides). The chickens can handle the earthworm population. DH doesn't like my idea: he like the snakes. But I'm sure he won't stop the turkeys from snacking snakes if I let the turkeys out.
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ruralmom

Songster
11 Years
Aug 14, 2009
256
3
179
NW Colorado
I need to get some turkeys for the same reason, snakes. Can anyone tell me the best breed, if there is one for the job? How about free range hardyness? Winter hardyness? What is the weak link in a turkey's hardyness for the winters, their feet? We have a ranch with alot of 'inventory' or 'yard art' according to my DH ( I call it broken down cr%&) that would make great housing.Thanks.
 

Lagerdogger

Songster
10 Years
Jun 30, 2010
923
35
184
Aitkin, MN
Quote:
The heritage breeds are plenty winter-tough. Mine won't go into a heated coop in the winter, even when its 35 below. The only time they actively seek shelter is in very cold winds. Then they go into the trees.
 

Breac

Songster
9 Years
Apr 20, 2010
215
12
131
Wisconsin
Not any snakes (that I know of), but when I still had two toms, they managed to kill a full-grown possum. Finding THAT sucker dead in the pen was quite a shocker!
 

ColbyNTX

Songster
10 Years
May 2, 2009
1,745
8
161
Woods, TX
Quote:
As Lager siad, they are very cold hardy! It won't get too cold in CO just give them a covered wind break. Any heritage bird will do fine but some are bigger than others. If they freerange, then you will need to protect them from predators. A good pair of Great Pyrenees does a great job.
 

ruralmom

Songster
11 Years
Aug 14, 2009
256
3
179
NW Colorado
Thank you for all the info. Really helpful. I do have two porch protecter dogs. A heeler and a newfoundland but I think the turkeys maybe tougher than they are. We do have alot of inventory and two long tree row for protection. Is it too late to get birds now? I was thinking about 3 at least one or more toms. Would three toms be ok or is that not good? I do have call duck and chickens but they do not free range they have very large enclosures. Would the turkeys get in with them and possible hurt them? Know of anyone that still have birds for sale?
 

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