Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Maternal Determination

Remember back in April our search for a tom turkey gobbler. Eventually we found "Fonzie" who is indeed a handsome boy. Although by turkey standards still young for breeding he has definitely kept his ladies content. We however did not allow the turkeys to hatch any eggs but did give some fertile eggs to a young local 4-H member for him to hatch for a start of turkeys. In return he shared 3 of his chicks with us. One hen tried to set all summer and O Wise One kept breaking her nest up. He wanted the young birds to get a little older before we tried raising little ones. She was persistent though.

She found the shelf that O Wise One has in the turkey house that he keeps the extra waterers on and hid her nest. It is atleast 7 foot off the floor! By the time O Wise One found it she was more than half through the hatch so we let her hatch her clutch of eggs. Yesterday was the big day and we had a heck of a time getting mama and babies off that shelf without any injuries. We do not like to have little ones when the weather is cold because of the expense of trying to keep them warm and running lights.

Once we had them all on the ground safely we put them under a wire cage that we keep to put over setting hens to protect them from the other hens and predators as well when they have little ones. We knew she was safe and contained while the chicks dried and we took that time to prepare a pen for her.When everything was ready Mama

And little ones were moved to their own warm brooder with lights until the chicks get a little larger.

Bless her heart she managed to hatch out all 6 of her eggs and not even a single weak bird or crooked foot among the lot. Not bad for a really young bird and late in the year too! 

The brooder is wrapped in plastic to keep the wind and rain off and an electric heat lamp to keep them warm  during those 40 degree nights of late. Hopefully with a little extra TLC we will be able to get these 6 up large enough to go back with mama to the big turkey pen.

Although not a convenient time it is good to see our turkey flock growing in leaps and bounds.

Blessings from The Holler

The Canned Quilter


  1. Fonzie is quite handsome and what a cute bunch of chicks. Hope all goes well, they sure are a good lookin' bunch.

  2. They are the cutest things.
    We haven't had much luck with Turkeys and really don't have the room, but I would still like to have some.
    Love the brown colour too.
    She was very determined wasn't she......

  3. Wonderful news...I think.

    There is a wild turkey hen that is by herself. I had no idea what happened to her flock. She is so lonely wandering around by herself.

  4. Good luck with the baby turkeys and the flock! We have never raised turkeys so I'm interested in how they do for you.

  5. That's just wonderful! She was one determined mama bird! Those little ones are so cute!

  6. It sounds like you have a great little momma on your hands! She will do great, I'm sure. :-)

  7. I've read that a good brooder is worth her weight in gold. Good luck with them! :)

  8. I just love Bourbon Reds! Great job - all of you!

  9. Congratulations! They are beautiful! We have a hen who decided to go broody this past month, too~ silly girls!

  10. Fonzie is so pretty! um handsome.


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