Male eastern Wild Turkey
- Wild Turkeys were hunted to near extinction in the early 1900’s. Recent numbers now put them around 7 million worldwide.
- There are 6 subspecies of the Wild Turkey found in North America. They are the Eastern, Osceola, Rio Grande, Merriam’s, Gould’s, and South Mexican.
- The Eastern subspecies is the most heavily hunted and most populous at just over 5 million.
- Wild Turkeys have 5000-6000 feathers.
- The record-sized adult male wild turkey, according to the National Wild Turkey Federation, weighed 16.85 kg (37.1 lbs.)
- Benjamin Franklin, in a letter to his daughter in 1784, suggested that the Wild Turkey would be his preference over the Bald Eagle as a symbol of the United States.
- Wild Turkeys are omnivores, and prefers acorns, nuts and various trees such as hazel, chestnut, hickory and pinyon pine. They also like seeds, berries, roots and insects. They occasionally consume amphibians, and lizards and snakes.
- Hens lay a clutch of 10-14 eggs, usually 1 per day. They are incubated 28 days, and after hatching, poults leave the nest after 12-24 hours.