turkey burping and head looks dark


In the Brooder
10 Years
Nov 1, 2009
Raymond, NH
I let out my birds this am and i noticed one of my toms was letting out small burps and head looks dirty(sorta dark)...anyone have any ideas?
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Without a pic, I default to `something out of the ordinary'. It is possible that this is the usual `chuff and puff', but we'll see (hopefully).
I found one of my turkeys looking distressed. I turned him upside down holding him by his feet. Whatever caused it, turning him upside down fixed it. He went to normal in minutes.
I wrote in a couple of weeks ago with a similar situation, except my turkey had dark leathery scabs on his head, which sounds more severe than what you are dealing with. I was so sure that he had come down with some terrible disease, and I had these images in my head of my whole flock getting sick... and it turned out he just had a worse than average case of bruising from getting into fights. I couldn't believe that was the explanation when it was first suggested, but over the next few days it became pretty apparent that he wasn't sick, just bruised. Now, I'm not saying that's necessarily what you are dealing with, but it's a possibility to consider.

Our toms don't burp much, but they do lots of hissing and puffing and other strange noises, mostly when they strut. Occasionally they do a weird swallowing gesture, where they stick their tongue out and make it look like they are choking. Apparently, for a tom turkey, that's just normal, but it always looks pretty odd to me.
Well my turkey is doing better. After talking to a neighbor i found out that 5-6 wild toms were fighting for a while with my tom for a while in the woods behind my house. So after hearing that and re-reading about the leathery looking scabs...that is what it was. So thankyou for everyones help and input i really appreciate it.

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