Turkey with wryneck- ok to eat?


11 Years
Nov 26, 2008
Hi all,
I posted this in the turkey section, but since it's a meat-eating question, perhaps here would be more appropriate.

Long story short, a couple of days ago, one of our 8 week old BBB turkeys developed what appeared to be wryneck - walking backwards, then flopping around, and unable to eat. We tried the vitamin thing, feeding him by hand, but watching him was really difficult for DH. He really felt that the bird was suffering and since he's a meat bird anyway, would be best to dispatch him.

So I did. I can't think of a reason why not to, erm, celebrate his life with a feast... he didn't appear to have an "illness" per se - any reason why we shouldn't partake? (I didn't want to take any chances, so he's already dressed and "resting" in the fridge.)
I don't see why not BUT... make sure it's not some strange turkey disease symptom first ok?
Yeah, I saw that thread... I have been assuming it was some sort of nutritional deficiency (they've been on 30% gamebird, but for about 2 weeks have had access to 15% grower as well. They prefer the 30%, but maybe this guy went for the other stuff...)

Anyone else with thoughts? Or we're having Thanksgiving early...
Look at it this way. What possible harm could come to you by eating the turkey? Say even if the wry neck was caused by botulism, it isn't but for the sake of argument let's pretend that it is, cooking would destroy the toxin. The cooking would destroy any harmful baceria either. So what harm? I'd eat him. Unless you are going to eat him raw, I can't see a health issue no matter what the problem is.
Actually it is possible for bacteria to live in/on on organism and the daily waste products from the bacteria are the actual toxins. Killing the bacteria works for some germs (like salmonella) but for others the chemicals left after killing can be harmful. I can't think of a good example right now tho......
A good example of this would be the exotoxin that is responsible for most food poisoning. (It's a byproduct of Staphylococcus.)

I'm not terribly worried about this, and since he's fresh I'm not worried about sporulating bugs either. (I have a microbiology background, so I love talking about bugs.) I just figured I'd poll the audience as I'm still learning about poultry)

And I'm actually planning to roast him tonight.
It seems like, if that were the case, you'd be able to take a rotting, week old dead bird and cook it up and eat it. I think cooking gets rid of MOST bacteria, but not everything. Some sicknesses are also caused by things other than bacteria as well- in all likelihood, you're right, but with a SICK bird (not necessarily the one discussed in this thread,) I think it's best to feed it to the burn barrel.
Cool that you have a microbiology background! It is one of my favorite subjects!

Hope your "roast" was ok.... and I guess if you post here we will all know you are ok as well.

Did we decide that wry-neck is a disease process or a deficiency or neurological ????

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