Talking Turkey: The Band of Brothers

Three male wild turkeys displaying (photo from Wikimedia Commons)

23 November 2021

When we gather over turkey this week we won’t be thinking of the wild birds that inhabit our parks and neighborhoods. But wild turkeys will be social gathering, too, in flocks that are like extended families.

Members of wild turkey (Meleagris gallopavo) flocks are often siblings. The males are usually brothers and though only one male, the dominant brother, gets to mate with the ladies the brothers work together to protect their territory. This 2013 article, Band of Brothers, explains the pecking order.

Sometimes the band of brothers causes trouble. For instance, they don’t recognize their own reflection so they attack those turkeys on the shiny car.

Moral of the story: If you part outdoors in turkey country, it’s best to have a dirty car.

p.s. Click here to see two turkeys chase the police in McCandless Twp last January.

(photo from Wikimedia Commons, click on the caption to see the original)

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