Freeloaders at Work!

the "herd" at work

HerbDoc has a “turkey tale” to tell: (please forgive the alliteration)

Several years ago I was delighted when a small flock of wild turkeys appeared on my wooded property.  Since we feed songbirds year round, the turkeys eventually found what is thrown for those birds that prefer to feed on the ground.

The small flock has grown into what I like to call a “herd” of somewhere near 100 birds!  It’s impossible to take a picture and capture all of them in one shot.  They will eat almost anything, but particularly love cracked corn and sunflower seeds.  Since the heavy snow arrived here, there’s not a berry left on any bush, and they have taken to eating some of the fat young buds on my spring flowering bushes.

When there isn’t sufficient food to satisfy them, a few will fly up to the second floor deck to tap on the French doors and peer in the dining room windows.  These are my reminders that they’re hungry!  In the meantime I think they’ve notified every turkey in the area that HerbDoc’s yard is the place to go for a free meal!

Hurry up and feed us!

There are several large toms that will gobble when I open the door and speak their language (Gobble! Gobble!).  They’re beginning to get the distinctive red and blue patches on their faces and are busily strutting their stuff and displaying their tail feathers while herding the hens into groups.

Can spring be far behind?

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About dirtynailz

Writer for a daily newspaper, gardener, tree hugger, orchid-grower, photographer, animal lover, hiker, wilderness seeker. Proponent of clover in the lawn and a dog on the bed.
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3 Responses to Freeloaders at Work!

  1. We feed a mixed flock of sparrows, weavers and doves. I hate to imagine how much food turkeys would go thru!!!

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  2. Martha says:

    Aww…what a cute picture. Looks like you have a (freeloading) friend. I can’t imagine how much food these birds go through. I feed a bunch of little birds and I can hardly keep up with them!

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  3. HerbDoc says:

    We named the freeloading friend “Gertie Turkey” but this afternoon 6 of them were on the deck. Fortunately cracked corn is faily inexpensive; we try to feed them once a day in the morning and will feed later on in the afternoon if it’s very snowy or icy. Think we’re going through about 100 lbs./week, but I enjoy them…and in spring they bring their little balls of fluff to visit at the free automat!

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