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#3766185 - Yesterday at 09:16 AM Update on my Eastern Wild pets
12 Point

Registered: 10/28/05
Posts: 5055
Loc: Mississippi

The poults I hatched out back in May seem to be close to full size after only 4 months. I've learned a ton from them in the interim and currently have a flock of 6.... 3 toms and 3 jennies. I actually hatched out 9, but one just wouldn't eat or drink in the first few days after hatching and died. Another I lost around 6 weeks of age during a week my neighbor was caring for my poultry while I was on vacation with the family. It escaped from the pen and she had to chase it around with a fishing net to finally capture it. I died later that day... I suspect from excessive stress.

I lost a 3rd bird about 6 weeks ago during the night while cleaning out the coop. It flipped out while on the roost, hit the floor of the coop, charged the door and escaped into the yard. He headed straight for the trees in the middle of the night and hasn't been seen since. Other than those incidents, the birds have been very, very vigorous and healthy. I had heard so many nightmare stories of blackhead disease and failure to thrive with wild turkeys in captivity, I honestly wasn't sure how they would fare, but these birds seem to be better than just fine.

As I said before, they seem to almost be full size, although both the jennies and jakes have a bit more filling out to do. Amazing what 30% protein feed for the first 3 months, then 20% protein feed since will do.

I started to get the first 'gobbles' from the jakes around 3 months of age. They now will shock gobble at just about anything. And it is also amazing to see just how different each bird's personality is. A couple jennies are still shy, but one jake seems to have no fear whatsoever of any of my family save for the cat.

Probably the biggest thing I've learned from caring for them is how much more vocal with putts, purrs, yelps the males have been compared to the females. After 25 years of turkey hunting, I had always assumed the females chattered more than the males. It's also amazing how quiet some of the purrs can be when they communicate... literally, they can talk to each other and you can not hear some of the sounds they make if you are over 5 yards away from them.

Here's a pic of the dominate jake. Still not a hint of a beard yet, but he thinks he's the boss of the entire flock.

Oh, and it's driving me crazy that the birds will no longer enter the coop at night and prefer to spend the night on the perch in the run. I know these birds can handle the weather at this point, but I still feel bad for them during the storms and cold to come.

#3766322 - Yesterday at 11:25 AM Re: Update on my Eastern Wild pets [Re: megalomaniac]
6 Point

Registered: 09/04/11
Posts: 573
Loc: Lawrence county, TN

Nice. I used to have 2 myself. My neighbors dog killed one and the other one was 5 years old when he died, he had an 11" beard and 1 1/4" spurs and when he gobbled it would rattle the windows in the house lol
#3766564 - Yesterday at 03:58 PM Re: Update on my Eastern Wild pets [Re: ZachMarkus]
16 Point

Registered: 11/10/10
Posts: 16587
Loc: Franklin TN

confused Online
that's pretty awesome
Haven't been this excited about deer season

...since last deer season

#3766862 - Yesterday at 08:35 PM Re: Update on my Eastern Wild pets [Re: catman529]
16 Point

Registered: 07/20/05
Posts: 19185
Loc: Rutherford / Wilson County Lin...

If it ain't broke, don't fix it.

#3766900 - Yesterday at 09:10 PM Re: Update on my Eastern Wild pets [Re: Gravey]
8 Point

Registered: 10/14/07
Posts: 2176
Loc: Lawrence County

i have had a few eastern wild and tame ones aswell in the past and they always died when they got a couple months old
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