Turkeys..which breed do I want?

Discussion in 'Turkeys' started by RockyToggRanch, Nov 23, 2008.

  1. RockyToggRanch

    RockyToggRanch Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 22, 2008
    Upstate NY
    Hi, I'm thinking about getting a few turkeys. Maybe hatching them myself. I need something cold hardy. Something that is sociable with other animals. It should be good for meat and cute to look at in the barnyard. Maybe even pettable by kids? What do you think about Beltsville small white or Midget white?

    What sort of accomodations do they need? Similar to chickens?

    I live in Upstate NY where heavy snow is common as are cold temps.

    Does anyone have these breeds locally?
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 23, 2008
  2. zatsdeb

    zatsdeb Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 2, 2007
    Lincoln, Illinois
    I Love my royal palm turkeys, they are pretty to look at and not as big as the other turkeys.
    you will have to check about if you are wanting to run them with your chickens or not, there are many people who do, and many who absoultly do not.
    I do, and have not had any problems, but you will decide for yourself.
    I am sure you will get a lot of advice here.
    my turkeys were raised with chickens because I ordered them from cackle, you can get as few as you want, and they include them with your chicks. I got 5 straight run, and ended up with 1 hen and 1 tom. lost 2 chicks right away, and 1 tom fell out of the tree in a bad storm. they will fly up and roost in the trees, but being colder they have been going in the big chicken coop and roosting there.
     
  3. RockyToggRanch

    RockyToggRanch Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 22, 2008
    Upstate NY
    So you let them in the coop with the chickens? cool
     
  4. zatsdeb

    zatsdeb Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 2, 2007
    Lincoln, Illinois
    yes I do, and we have the entire property fenced so everyone can roam around free. I love to watch them.
     
  5. RockyToggRanch

    RockyToggRanch Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 22, 2008
    Upstate NY
    Is it cold there? Have you ever had issues with the cold bothering them? What about snow? We measure snow in feet here. We've already had over 4 ft this month. It's not uncommon to get that much in a 24 hr period. February before last we had 11 feet in a week.
    Would they be okay staying inside the coop all winter? Or would I need a covered run? My chickens all free range and now that it's deep snow, they hang out in the barn aisle instead. I will be building a run in the spring. [​IMG]
     
  6. zatsdeb

    zatsdeb Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 2, 2007
    Lincoln, Illinois
    we have 2 chicken houses, and a big barn that they can go in, but they seem to go in the one chicken house. it stays warm enough in there with all the chickens and we keep water buckets, (electric) so they always have water. they all seem to do fine in the winter. the chickens always go in the chicken house, we keep it open all the time, we have miniature donkeys and goats patroling the grounds to keep the varmits away, the donkeys do that mostly. we only have had an occasional skunk or opossem in there but we took care of them! I think a run is for protection for the chickens from predators, but we have been fortunate.
    the ducks sleep outside all the time, winter time they have snow on them, they like it I guess.
    the guineas sleep in the trees still, but it is not as cold yet, lows have been in the 20's, it is 38 right now.
    I think as long as they have an option to go inside they will when they feel like it, that is where I think raising the chickens with my turkeys cause the chickens teach the turkeys where to go, turkeys are really dumb.
    chickens teach them to eat and drink when you first get them.
     
  7. what was i thinking

    what was i thinking Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 1, 2008
    cny ny
    Brahampooter are you in oswego county.... tug hill, redfield or lowville? got to be somewhere like that..
     
  8. RockyToggRanch

    RockyToggRanch Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 22, 2008
    Upstate NY
    Quote:Very close! Yes! Oswego county. In Happy Valley. Gotta love the snow! It's been 9 degrees at night this past week. I need more body heat in the barn.
     
  9. ivan3

    ivan3 spurredon Premium Member

    4,511
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    291
    Jan 27, 2007
    BOCOMO
    There's some good information on Feathersite about `Beltsville/Midget Whites:

    http://www.feathersite.com/Poultry/Turkeys/BeltsBonnie.html

    The American Livestock Breeds Conservancy has a lot of good turk info:

    http://www.albc-usa.org/downloads.html

    The heritage breeds are all cold hardy (you have Wild Easterns wandering your territory, yes?). I wouldn't know about 4ft. of snow (thank goodness), but our Royals and Slates are indifferent to two feet of snow and go plowing about chuffing and chortling.

    Royals are wonderful eye candy all feathered out and displaying, but I estimate they'd look like starved rat dressed out and served up (not much meat).
     
  10. zatsdeb

    zatsdeb Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 2, 2007
    Lincoln, Illinois
    my royal palm tom is so much larger than I thought he would be! I think he would dress out really nice! although he is not for eating, just for helping his mate with getting me some nice hatching eggs next spring!!!!
    maybe because they eat well!?!?!
    the last time I picked him up I would say he weighs at least 20 lbs! (that was about a month ago!)
     

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