please help, my turkeys are fighting!

Discussion in 'Turkeys' started by Wensbirds, Sep 16, 2011.

  1. Wensbirds

    Wensbirds Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 23, 2011
    So I have a pair of bbb turkeys, They have been hand raised together since day one and usually they free range all day and he puffs all up & struts following her all over, she never notices! The male got sick a couple days ago was very lethargic and sleeping most the morning I noticed that something was wrong as this wasn't his normal. S I was watching him to see what was up. In the afternoon the female came up and was wrapping her neck over his and rubbing her neck all over his chest then all the sudden she started pecking him like really hard, like drawing blood hard. before my son and I got to them from across the yard it turned into a violent all out brawl! It took both of us, a hose of water and a rake just separate them! So I'm thinking ok... well maybe its cause hes not feeling good? I move him into quarntine and nurse him well this morning hes so much better ([​IMG]y)
    that he escaped his temporary hospital room and is outside the fence to females run, So I let her out to free range together and with in like 5 mins. she's attacking him again! I separated immediately because he's on the mend and I feared it might be to much for him strength wise.
    ok now my questions are:
    how long do you think I need to keep them separate?
    is it common for male and female to all out brawl?
    I'm sorry this is long I'm hoping some of you with more experience with turkeys will have an idea what's going on. I feel bad for my poor buddy, she's freaking mean![​IMG]
     
  2. chicmom

    chicmom Dances with Chickens

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    I wish I could help with this.....I'm very new to turkeys and I've never heard anything like this. I do think any bird will pick on another if they sense weakness....

    I will just bump your post so that other, more experienced turkey people will see this and help you!

    Good luck and I hope you get things figured out,

    Sharon
     
  3. Wensbirds

    Wensbirds Out Of The Brooder

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    Thanks! I tried for a bit this morning to let the two free range with other "birds" but female started in again, he holds his own quite well but I jumped in after a couple min's. cause it was getting ugly. They're separated , yet again......... Am I making it worse by stopping it and separating them? Even separate they hang by each other's fence all day and she makes the sweetest little "coo" noises to him. If only she would go back to ignoring him! lol I'm thinking seriously that I just might have to re home one of them [​IMG]
     
  4. jaydoes

    jaydoes Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 1, 2013
    Our turkeys are doing the exact same thing....though neither has been sick. The female keeps provoking the male into fighting and now he's all ticked off at her too. If anyone knows what to...we would also like to know.
     
  5. junkprospector

    junkprospector Chillin' With My Peeps

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    new to turkeys too - but if 2 of you are experiencing the same thing - female on male violent behavior, then i think it sounds more like natural behavior than a problem. Maybe it just needs to take its course... Perhaps the girls are thinking "if he can make it through the beatings then he is a worthy mate. If not, then he is unsuitable breeding stock"
     
  6. mrclif

    mrclif Out Of The Brooder

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    I too had a tom that was fighting with a hen, didnt witness it but when I got home to feed and water them she had a bloody snood and marks on her face. There was a few marks on my slate Toms face and he was still trying to hover over her and bully her around.
    I can always tell which have been fighting by who's ever marked up. But that's the first time it was a hen and tom.
     
  7. sandspoultry

    sandspoultry Everybody loves a Turkey

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    I just let them sort it out by themselves, in the spring mating season I have seen ours fight off and on all day long. They have never killed each other or done any serious injury. If you seperate them as soon as you put them back together it will be game on again.
     
  8. jaydoes

    jaydoes Out Of The Brooder

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    One change to my situation...i did some more research and I believe that I have two toms which may explain the seriousness of the fighting. The problem I have with it, is that they are more tor less pets, rather than breeding stock, so I'm not really comfortable with letting them tear each other up.
    Also, since the one male has become aggressive with the other, he's also at times started to show aggression towards us as well, although its only rarely and he still enjoys being petted and having company.
    Maybe its because turkeys are more instinct that brains...but what I don't understand is that the big white one loses the fight every single time..yes he is the one who will turn around and provoke the other into fighting again. If he would just learn that fighting gets his butt kicked every time, they would get alone, but he just takes a breather and then goes right back.
    The one who loses is starting to get pretty serious lacerations on the back of his neck from being pinned down by the other one. So temporarily I have seperated them until I decide what to do. I actually would rather give one up than watch them tearing each other up, so I'm not sure what we will do. I thank you guys for letting me know that this is typical turkey behavior and I wonder if the reason they fight is because of the lack of hens? Will they grow out of it? or is this something they are just going to do? They seem to really hate each other now...which is sad because they were pretty good buddies until a few days ago. Also, I wonder why it is that the loser is the one who always provokes the fights?
     
  9. mrclif

    mrclif Out Of The Brooder

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    I feel your pain I've got 5 toms and 2 hens in the same pen. 6 of them are brothers and sisters and one is from a diffrent clutch. This is my first time raising turkeys but I've been a turkey hunter for 20 years and have witnessed these peaking order rituals in the wild. But from my experiences seperating doesnt help becuase as soon as you put them back together they usually go back at it. I've had success with taking the one that thinks he's the boss of everybody and holding him down till submission. I think they gonna fight till a pecking order is established its just the way it is. Mine are pets also hate to see em fight but they dont do all that often PRESENTLY.
     
  10. Arielle

    Arielle Chicken Obsessed

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    Totally agree!!

    Separating causes the re-entry fighting behavior again. If my toms get stuck on the otherside of the fence form each other, they fight when they get together. So I try to kep them all together--no excapeees
     

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