Wild Turkeys

This Spring, wild turkeys have been coming to our backyard to eat the bird seed that falls on the ground from the bird feeders we provide for our small wild songbird friends.

These big birds are so amazing! ¬†It’s as if live dinosaurs are roaming around! ¬†Watching their behavior and trying to get some pictures of them has been a recent big challenge of mine.

These are big birds, and when they puff themselves up they are even larger and more majestic!
This is an excited male. His wattles and the bare skin of the head and neck become engorged with blood. His snood can be seen drooping down on top of his yellow bill. It is a fleshy growth that when he is not excited, shrinks down to a tiny pyramid at the top of his head.
Note the snood – the tiny pyramid over his bill. When the turkey gets excited, this growth expands and droops down over the side of his bill.
Here is a sequence showing how the snood starts to expand as a turkey gets excited, until it droops down over his bill.
Turkeys are dinosaurs, from their toes on up to their huge wingspan and on to their incredible and unusual heads!

 

Look at those huge legs!
A Tom Turkey in all of his splendor!
On a turkey’s fan tail, each feather is exactly the same size to make for a perfect fan.
They have black and iridescent, coppery feathers that change with the light and their behavior.
Gotta love them!