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.
With tens of thousands of different species, fish and crustacean behaviors, habits and abilities vary wildly. Typically, fish can be defined as cold-blooded, aquatic vertebrates. They usually have streamlined bodies, breathe underwater through the use of gills, have two sets of paired fins, have a jaw and have skin that is covered with scales. Fish have an important role in many cultures, including ours, ranging from being seen as religious symbols to subjects of books and popular movies.
Did you know?
- Fish have been around for 500 million years, which means they were well established long before dinosaurs roamed the earth!
- Fish have excellent senses of sight, touch, taste and many possess a good sense of smell and ‘hearing’.
- Fish don’t sleep like humans do, as they don’t have eyelids, but they do rest.
- Recent studies have shown how fish perceive pain.
- Most fish breathe underwater by exchanging gases over their gills. When fish open their mouths, they pull oxygen-rich water in and across their gills. When they close their mouths, oxygen in the water passes into their blood, through blood vessels on the gills.
- Fish suffocate when taken out of water. Fish need water to hold their gills open, when taken out of water, their gills collapse and they are not able to take oxygen into their body.
- Some fish, such as eels, catfish and bowfin, can actually breathe air through their skin and/or their organs!
- Tuna-like fish and certain sharks can swim 50 miles per hour in short bursts!
- Fish use their fins to stabilize themselves and as an extra tool to propel themselves forward.
Several crustaceans are consumed by humans, the vast majority of which consists of crabs, lobsters, shrimp and prawns. Crustaceans are characterized by their jointed appendages and hard shells. Most live in either fresh water or marine environments, but a few have adapted to life on land, such as terrestrial crabs.
Did you know?
- Lobsters live for about 15 years, and some may live to be 100!
- Lobsters have a pair of pincers called chelapeds, or claws, one being a heavier crusher claw and the other a smaller feeding claw.
- Lobsters live anywhere from 10 to 600 feet beneath the ocean’s surface.
- Lobsters have tiny hairs that cover their entire body. These hairs are not only sensitive to touch, they also act as taste buds.
- Lobsters possess a short set of antennae which allow them to receive chemical signals carried by the seawater. Some researchers believe that receptors on the antennules enable lobsters to detect the species, sex and even mood of other animals nearby.
- The longest distance ever traveled by a lobster was 225 miles!
- Lobsters are primarily scavengers. Their typical diet is comprised of clams, crabs, mussels, and worms.
Learn about the life of a fish/crustacean harvested from the sea or raised on a fishery.
Ducks and Geese
Did you know?
- Geese and ducks love bathing and playing in water.
- Ducks and geese can fly as much as 332 miles a day.
- Geese have exceptional eyesight and a wide field of vision.
- A male duck is called a drake, a female is called a duck.
- One way to tell a male from a female duck: Females make a loud quack while drakes have a raspy quieter quack.
- Ducks are gregarious, social animals who like to hang out in large groups with other ducks.
- Baby ducks are precocial, meaning they are not completely dependent on their parents for food.
- Geese mate for life and are very protective of their partners and offspring.
- Geese can travel thousands of miles during their yearly migrations. They fly in a characteristic V-shape to reduce wind resistance and conserve energy. They rotate from the front to the back when they get tired.
- Toulouse geese are the type of geese used in foie gras production. The breed specifically is known for its trusting nature and docile personality.
Learn about the life of a duck or goose raised for foie gras.