Canticle Farm Turkeys
When you farm you tend to try different projects to see what fits in best with your situation. We were introduced to heritage turkeys while farm-sitting for a neighbor who had a small flock and my teenage son asked if we could try them. Setting up a new venture is time consuming and I put it off, but then COVID hit. Suddenly I had both kids home all the time, and plenty of help. We bought 12 baby birds, of three different heritage breeds, and decided to pick our favorite. We settled on the Narragansett breed for its calmness, foraging ability, and advertised mothering instinct. Our little flock is now a year old and beginning to lay eggs. It's early days, but the birds have the most personality we've ever seen in poultry so they entertain us while we wait for poults (babies.) You'll notice that we have hens of three different breeds; Narragansett, Spanish Black, and Bourbon Red. Our bakers dozen of turkey babies were mostly toms. We kept the two best toms and all three hens with the intention of adding the purebred young hens to our flock and processing or selling the mixed breeds if they grew out nicely. Turkey raising is said to be challenging as the birds are not usually good mothers and babies don't have the best survival instincts, but we'll see if we can set up a workable system. In the meantime, the turkeys are enjoying free range life in our woods and pastures, love following us around on the property, and are great "pasture art!"