To Rehome or not?

Discussion in 'Turkeys' started by EllasCoop, Feb 12, 2012.

  1. EllasCoop

    EllasCoop New Egg

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    I have two heritage toms that are about 1 year old. The boys used to roam/live with our chickens until they starting attacking some of the girls and trying to breed them. At that point we separated them from the hens and made them their own yard with their own house. Since moving them, they constantly pace the fence line and one of the boys has rubbed his chest feathers off on the fence from going back and forth. They seem as though they are miserable. Is there anything I can do to improve their quality of life, or should I consider placing them into a new environment? I love my boys and just want them to be happy again. :( Any advice would be appreciated!
     
  2. ivan3

    ivan3 spurredon Premium Member

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    When we switched from the 6ft, standard chicken wire to the 1"x2", 6ft. welded wire for the run fencing the appearance of `ready for the oven' breasts slowly improved and then disappeared. The small diameter of chicken wire rubbing on the chest feathering acts like very dull razors dragging over body hair (pulls them/it out). Our guys can see us through the dining room window, they do pace a bit (mostly when they expect to range for a while and know we're here). They don't lose feathers when `fretting'. [​IMG] We have 2"x2"s, about 4ft. off the ground, in a couple corners of the run and anchored to fencing (about 3 ft. of roost space on each) they like to perch on them (or get away from one another without having to return to roosts in shed). Have gone through several wooden boxes/plank shelving (spread sunflower seed on them) in run - they use them to nap on. For a brief time we hung a length of that black plastic `weed barrier' on inside of run fencing, at chest ht., to prevent direct friction with chicken wire.
     
  3. DCasper

    DCasper Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It sound like they might need to start free ranging...and possibly have a hen or two.
     
  4. jasonm11

    jasonm11 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    give them a few hens to court and enjoy the fun of raising turkey babies.
     
  5. EllasCoop

    EllasCoop New Egg

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    My husband is not wanting additional turkeys as one of ours keeps jumping up and kicking him in the back, do you think this would subside if they had some girls?
     
  6. ivan3

    ivan3 spurredon Premium Member

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    Adding hens might well make things worse (for your husband...). A turkey tom persisting in attempts to exercise dominance over any human is what I'd refer to as the `eating variety'.

    We have, and have had, several toms and have never had any display aggression towards us, if any do they'll be remembered as a meal and some leftovers.

    Get a hen for the easy-going tom.
     
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2012
  7. aa3655

    aa3655 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You didn't mention what kind of turkeys you have, but I'm assuming about 20 pounds at one year... it can't be comfortable for your husband to have a turkey 'kicking' him!

    I don't want to offend, but I agree with ivan3... my advice would be to send at least the aggressive tom to freezer camp and If the remaining tom is good natured, get him one or two ladies to keep him busy. In my turkey experience, the toms were not aggressive (bourbon reds) but I've heard other people say that sometimes they can be very protective/aggressive.

    I've never heard of the hens being aggressive, except when they're sitting, so if your husband knows he'll be safe from attacks he might be amenable to having more turkeys!
     

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