When studied in their natural environments, turkeys are intelligent, playful birds, with personalities as varied as cats and dogs.
Did you know?
Wild turkeys can live up to 12 years, and develop wingspans of four to five feet.
Wild turkeys can run up to 25 miles an hour, and can even fly for short distances at speeds of up to 55 miles per hour.
Unlike some birds, wild turkeys do not fly south for the winter, but instead forage year-round for seeds, berries and insects, even climbing trees in the pursuit of food.
At night, wild turkeys roost in the low branches of trees.
Like peacocks, male turkeys use their plumage to attract females, puffing out their bodies and displaying their tail feathers.
Female turkeys will hatch up to 18 chicks at a time, and will roost with their young in ground-level nests until they are able to fly.
Mother turkeys will defend their young against any predators, including raccoons, snakes and owls.
Young turkeys will live with their mothers for up to five months, learning many important social skills and the normal vocal and visual communications necessary for life in the flock.
Turkeys are born with full-color vision.
Benjamin Franklin respected the wild turkey immensely, and even desired for the turkey, not the bald eagle, to be the national bird of the United States.
Learn about the life of a turkey raised for meat on a factory farm.