Wild Turkey

Discussion in 'Turkeys' started by protodon, Mar 3, 2009.

  1. protodon

    protodon Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 3, 2009
    Nottingham,PA
    Hi I'm new here. I have experience with chickens, ducks and geese. Now I am planning on branching out. I bought an incubator and am incubating some Texas A & M quail eggs but I just recently became interested in hatching some turkey eggs. Specifically Wild Eastern Turkey. I think they're really nice looking birds and I'd actually like to maybe raise some for the Thanksgiving table. Now I have a couple questions:

    1. I've read that heritage turkey are ready for the table at about 4 months. Now if they happen to be 4 months old by july/august and I wait until Thanksgiving for harvest, is the meat going to be tougher or something? Or should I try to hatch these birds around july to be ready by the end of November.

    2. I'm not too keen on killing my own birds. I have yet to try. i'd rather not do it. Is there someone I can call that will do this for me. Preferably off my property? Is there a name for this person other than butcher or turkey-slaughter-guy?

    Any advice would be much appreciated!
     
  2. KyleD.

    KyleD. Chillin' With My Peeps

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    your wanting to hatch "wild" turkey eggs or just Eastern turkeys?
     
  3. Dread Pirate Roberts

    Dread Pirate Roberts Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 20, 2009
    NorCal
    Quote:I feel the same way. I've considered doing the turkey thing as well and my bright idea is to raise an extra turkey and put an ad on craigslist seeking somebody to do the dirty work in exchange for the extra turkey. I haven't gotten any further than thinking about it and I still don't know if I could do it even if I found somebody.

    I'd probably name the birds and then...fuhgeddaboudit! I'm still sad 'cuz I gave away my rooster to a good home! [​IMG]
     
  4. KyleD.

    KyleD. Chillin' With My Peeps

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    im thinkinh maybe a small processing place, like you would take a deer to get processed for you. theres a place here thats local thats goes by the name of "wilsons" you can take beef and stuff there and they will process it for you, have a place like that around?
     
  5. Harley's girl

    Harley's girl Chillin' With My Peeps

    Depending in where you live you will have to get a permit for your turkeys. I would personally go with the heritage. The wild strand do not get as big as fast. You can try them now, and see how it goes. Last year we got broilers and it said 4-6 weeks, well it took longer than that. I did just want it said feed, how much, what kind, watering, removing the feed at night, and so on so on! Give it a try now. You can always have a deep fried turkey and a roasted one! [​IMG] But really, check out your laws. Here in Ohio we have to have a permit for the eastern stand of turkeys, ring neck pheasants, some strand of rabbits, and of course deer. [​IMG] Good luck and welcome to the BYC! [​IMG]
     
  6. bigzio

    bigzio Overrun With Chickens

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    I really don't think that you would have any trouble with the turkey becoming tough. The wild eastern turkeys that we harvest by hunting are 2 and 3 year old birds.

    Thighs and legs go for soup, while the breast is roasted and delicious.

    ~ bigzio
     
  7. sandspoultry

    sandspoultry Everybody loves a Turkey

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    Quote:Heritage turkeys are slow growing, they don't fill out well until 6 or 7 months. We like ours in the 9 to 10 month old range. I think you have heritage turkeys confused with the Broad Breasted types.

    Steve in NC
     
  8. protodon

    protodon Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nottingham,PA
    Hmmm, I thought that the Eastern Turkeys were Heritage breeds. I assume the heritage bourbon red, narangassett,etc are somewhere in between the wild eastern and the white commercial turkeys.

    Right now I live in PA and we are allowed to keep WIld Eastern Turkeys bit you need a permit to release them into the wild. I wasn't planning to release any of them. i was thinking of selling extra and eating some. Which I still don't know how i would do that.

    I have done a search before and being in PA there are about a million Deer Processors but i don't see any for any other kind of animals (beef,poultry,etc)

    @napa I was thinking the same thing except my paym,ent for slaughter might be a whole turkey because if they are willing to slaughter I think paying them in turkey would make them happy!

    I'm pretty sure I will just end up with half a dozen turkeys gobbling and wandering around my yard into old age. At least they're pretty. pretty enough to eat...
     
  9. wilds of pa

    wilds of pa Chillin' With My Peeps

    Yes, you might be able to release in Pa if they pass all the tests, However i doubt you will get a permit for release even if they would pass the tests.

    You surly cant sell them legally or even give them away without having a propagation permit here in Pa..

    **Also legally you must purchase wild eastern turkeys in Pa from a approved facility by the PGC, like me.. [​IMG] , if you purchase out of state and go to get a permit, they will ask you were you got them from..they may allow it or may not..Best bet is to contact the PGC before purchasing and seeing what they will require of you..

    Charlie
     
    Last edited: Mar 3, 2009
  10. Harp Turkey Ranch

    Harp Turkey Ranch Chillin' With My Peeps

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    McCleary, WA
    Hmmm, I thought that the Eastern Turkeys were Heritage breeds. I assume the heritage bourbon red, narangassett,etc are somewhere in between the wild eastern and the white commercial turkeys.

    Eastern wilds are just that WILD. Heritage turkeys would be bourbon,Narragansett,bronze,etc. Commercial/broad breasted are just that as well.
    BB turkeys will finish out about 4 months. Heritage finish out 6-10 months,Wilds 10-16 months. Wilds are small and take for ever to grow to any size and then they are really never big.​
     

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