The wild turkey is a large gamebird with bronze, iridescent feathers, and a naked head adorned with blue and red fleshy ornaments. The male has a “beard” of hairlike feathers on the upper breast.
Turkeys flock together for most of the year in groups of about 20 birds. But when the mating season comes, male turkeys set up individual territories. Each male mates with a number of females.
The male turkey courts females with tail fanned, wings spread low, and head held high. It emits the characteristic gobbling call at mating time.
Turkeys are omnivores; they eat seeds, herbs, roots, buds, flowers, and up to 4,000 insects a day.
Turkeys do not migrate. A mature male turkey can grow to 4 feet (1.2m) in length and weight about 22 pounds (10kg) on average.
The turkey’s scientific name is Meleagris gallopavo.