Purring Turkeys

Discussion in 'Turkeys' started by kertneybrand, Mar 6, 2012.

  1. kertneybrand

    kertneybrand New Egg

    Mar 6, 2012
    I am fairly new to owning turkeys. I have two and have had them for about a year now. I still can't tell whether or not they are toms or hens. Here lately, when you walk by them one will start to lay down and start "purring". Every now and then, the other one will start doing it. I was just wondering if anyone knew what that meant. Thank you!
  2. doop

    doop Out Of The Brooder

    Jul 5, 2011
    n.e minnesota
    Sounds like you have a couple hens. By now you would have heard them gobble and display and a male snood would be much bigger than a hens. Im fairly new with turkeys too and its pretty easy to tell by now if you had a Tom. It's a lot easier to tell the difference when you see one of each sex grow up.And if they are laying down for you they are submitting for breeding, one of my hens just started doing that last week. It was kinda funny watching my Tom fumble around figuring it out.
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2012
  3. FarmerGilland

    FarmerGilland Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 29, 2011
    On Top of the Mountain
    Absolutely 100% hens!!!!
  4. Marengoite

    Marengoite Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 1, 2012
    Agreed that you have hens. What variety do you have? There's a couple things to check for:
    Behavior - Toms will strut, fan their tales out and puff out their feathers. They will also do a little dance, and shake all over.
    Anatomy - Toms have beards (although some hens do as well) but they also have caruncles that are more pronounced and change color when sexually aroused. Also their snoods will grow much longer and their heads will flush with color during display.
    Calls - Hens putt, purr, chuckle, chirp, cackle. Toms will do most all of that too, but they will also gobble when you honk the car horn, hoot like an owl, or clap your hands suddenly. Hens never do.
  5. weirdturkeyfreak

    weirdturkeyfreak Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 28, 2010
    it sounds weird but i think they want to mate...
  6. SonnyGirl

    SonnyGirl Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 18, 2011
    Pine Bush, NY
    I know this is sort of an old thread, but I see noone responded. I just wanted to say that that doesn't sound weird at all! Your hens want to mate!! I know in a lot of species, the females reject males attempts to mate or are feisty about it. Not so with turkeys! When the hens are ready, they WANT to lay eggs, mate, have babies. I was worried about my Tom "pushing himself" on my hen when they got old enough. Then I saw her flirting with him, laying down before he even had time to figure out an "offer" was made, and assuming the position like "hey... I'm over here!!" lol. When the hens want to mate, you can most assuredly tell. You better get them a tom before they get a crush on people lol

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