This Article is About
spring season
great joy
members of the family
nostrils
manure
The Many Joys Involved In Owning Turkeys
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Oh boy, when I was a kid my dad thought it would be a WONDERFUL idea to buy turkeys. What brought him to this wild conclusion I have no idea, but I do know that after we moved to Grants Pass, Oregon from Juneau, Alaska and finally moved out of my Grandmother's basement into our new mobile... he thought we'd be good farmers... on: 1/2 an acre, lol.

We already had a ton of animals when he came to the decision to go to one of the local feed stores and buy some turkey chicks during the spring season. We had chickens, ducks, a pony, goats, a dove, a dog, and a cat(s). I don't recall if we had the horse the pig and the cow at that time, but that's another story.

So off we go, three little chitlins and their dad (mom was probably working) off to get a few new members of the family. As we opened the doors to the small feed store, the sweet, dusty fragrance of horse feed, plant manure, and fresh chicken droppings filled the nostrils. Lol, we had three favorate things to do at the feed store, one was to visit the new arivals during the spring, two, climb up and through the stacked hay in the back barn, and three, have fun with the horse pill magnets (if you don't know, those are for horses to swallow, they'll pick up things like nails, etc., and then the horse poops em' right out). As we browsed through the springs chicks, I remember quite a variety, well at least three: ducklings, chicklings, and turk... lings. We picked the ones we wanted and paid the local slave master, and hucked those turkeys home.

All the way home we kids admired our new found babies. When we got home we introduced them to the other birds and their new home under the chicken shed my dad had built. As most of our outside birds were not generally too cuddly, it was the same with these. It was a great joy to us kids having wild turkeys grow up in our own yard.

I believe we had one or two for thanksgiving and they were delicious. But as time went by and they grew older, the rest seemed to fall prey to predators. One by one they disappeared, until there was one lonesome male. The largest of the bunch, he stood big, fat, and wide, with booshed out feathers and a long beard. For some unknown reason that we still cannot figure out to this day, one day that turkey snapped: seizing his demonic anger on one person... my older sister of three years--who at the time was like... 15-17 years old.

This possessed turkey would literally attack my sister and even wait outside of the door for her to come out. My sister recalls the story (much better than myself) of the day she got the courage to stand up to this turkey: with several layers of jackets and shirts, gloves, boots, and a bicycle helmet over her face, and armed to the teeth... with a broom. According to her the turkey was waiting, and as she BOLDLY stepped forward and then stood her ground about ready to beat the crap out of the turkey. However, this gobbler knew who it was behind the mask, and was an expert of playing off her fear. He proceeded to circle my horoic sister, tilting his head this way and that way, and emitting an eerie eeeeeerrr-kakaka sound of the most fowl kind (no pun intended), my sister proceeded to do absolutely nothing and try to stay as still as possible.

Others stories include a video tape of him chasing my sister across the yard, waiting for her to come down from the tree fort and chasing her back across the yard and her slamming into the camera. And of my mother literally beading it bloody with a broom handle just to let my sister in the car. I have no doubt that today, the turkey wouldn't stand a chance against my sister, but back then, he had the advantage of fear. He would literally fly in the air and body slam you, lol! Sigh, fun times. I don't remember how long he lasted, but his final demise according to my mother, was being sold to some neighbors and probably eaten as a thanksgiving turkey.

Want to learn how to raise turkeys?


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