Thursday, May 30, 2013

The Wild Turkey Family

A little over a week ago, I heard a lot of bird vocalizations outside the house, including much crow cawing and some classic upset-turkey sounds.

I suspected the bobcat of being in the area, and wandered over towards the neighboring property where the crow hullaballoo was coming from, but saw no sign of the cat.

All the while, a female turkey was standing stationary just above the driveway, clucking continuously.

As I made my way back towards the house, I heard tiny peeping sounds from the direction that I had come. The crows at this point had dispersed. Then the female turkey switched to highly agitated gobbling, and I knew then that it was a mother turkey who had become separated from her young.

I went right inside, but "spied" from the upstairs bedroom window, and within about a minute saw a group if quite tiny baby turkeys rejoining their mother. Then the mother moved off, with the babies following (and sometimes leading). That's where the photo below came from.

Mom turkey with eight youngsters. Reunited!
It's been about a week-and-a-half and we have seen this mother with her young almost very day on or near our property. Yesterday there was tell-tale evidence of splashing at the ground-level bird bath on the patio.

Today I saw the mother again, in almost the exact spot that the photo above shows, and I could see the group (and there were still eight babies visible this time) moving towards the patio where the bird bath is.

I tried to spy without being seen, but that was difficult, and I didn't want to risk scaring them. But I caught a glimpse of the group fully engaged in drinking at the bath! I managed one photo, with a chair and border of the glass window clearly visible in the shot.

Cool drink time for the turkey family.
So far this mother has been quite successful at protecting her brood!


  1. How kool. I found out from a friend in Anza who researches and has written handbook on Bighorn Sheep told me that In the beginning when they introduced the original Turkeys, they were from either Kansas or Missouri. They didn't exactly do so well. But then there was introduced a population from Texas called the Rio Grande Turkey. It's population exploded unlike the other variety. In fact they have apparently interbred in some cases.

    Happy for you for having these gifts of Nature in your yard. very Kool. I'm meeting Biologist Richard Halsey this morning in Ranchita. We're going to review that ridiculous San Felipe Control Burn that got out of control.

    Back to Sweden on Wednesday

    Cheers, Kevin

  2. I didn't know you were still in the area! Assumed you were on "Swedish-Time." These fires are maddening, especially when they are SO preventable. Apparently the Banner fire of a few days ago was caused by people shooting (and don't get me started about irresponsible gun-owners...!!!).

    1. Actually there were two fires. The San Felipe control Burn which got out of control and what was labeled the General fire which started across the Hwy from the Banner Grade General Store and yes was started by Recreational shooting. This is where that individual/s need to be got and held financially accountable.