Tuesday, November 6

Farm Photo 11/6/07: Hayfield Grazing Rights

Wild Turkeys Up Front, Sheep Toward The Back

Wild turkeys are plentiful in these parts, and there are two females who have been living in the woods at the edge of our hayfield for years. Once when we were walking along the field's perimeter, Robin trotted out of a thicket with an enormous turkey egg proudly clasped between her little beagle jaws. (We put it back.) Each spring the mothers parade around in the grass with their babies lined up behind them. If we're lucky we catch a glimpse of flying lessons.

I think the babies usually venture off on their own once they've grown up, but a few weeks ago a flock of eight turkeys started spending hours each day in the hayfield, happily pecking around for bugs and whatever else wild turkeys like to eat.

They aren't bothered by the sheep in the least, and the other evening I watched as they completely ignored three deer who were leaping around playing right next to them. When Bear and I appear, though, they always run off to the safety of the woods. We did manage to sneak up on them the other day, and I was able to quickly zoom in to 16x with my trusty little camera and snap a few halfway decent photos before they noticed us.

Yesterday morning I was surprised to see them hanging out down by the spring. This time they fled by flight, flapping into the air in their ungraceful turkey way and landing just a few yards into the woods. Then they continued on foot, crashing up the hillside through the fallen leaves while gobbling excitedly to each other.

It kind of feels like turkeys are taking over the farm. I guess they know we usually have beef on Thanksgiving.

Want to see more?
There are more hayfield photos here.
Lots of farm landscape photos
Plenty of autumn color here.
And you'll find all sorts of sheep pictures here.

© 2007 FarmgirlFare.com, the award-winning blog where Farmgirl Susan shares stories & photos of her crazy country life on 240 remote acres.


  1. Hey! I am first in today fora change!

    Your writing is so evocative Susan - only wild birdies round here are hanging off the seed feeders & chilling by the pool (OK, birdbath).

    Northerly breeze blew in today, feeling a tad wintry. XX

  2. I love the turkeys in our area - occasionally see a small group alongside the road with their feathers just sparkling in the sunlight. Rarely so many as this though! Run to Susan's farm, turkeys - before T DAY! LOL - actually am planning to order turkey bird today -but definitely not a wild one!

  3. I so look forward to your posts and pictures. I have seen two wild turkeys in person in my 38 years and it was just amazing to me. I'm looking at a property that would give me 68 acres and they say it is full of wild turkey and other wonderful creatures to watch and take photos of. You are my inspiration! :-)
    Take care! ~*~

  4. We have loads of wild turkeys here in Sonoma County, CA (introduced, not native). While I know they are a nuisance in the vineyards, I do enjoy encounters with them. This summer on my favorite hike there was a Tom in a tree gobbling. We gobbled at him and he gobbled back. It was so funny - I only wish I knew what we were talking about...probably about keeping distance from the lovely ladies in the field! =)

  5. Randomly, we have wild turkeys that lurk(ey?) around my husband's office in Sunnyvale.

    Upon investigation we were told that, "Well, obviously, we are close to the bay." Which made us both wonder who told this woman that turkeys were water fowl and then how come she could be so dumb as to believe them while still being smart enough to dress herself and get to work on time.

    Either way - I love the turkey shot.

  6. Wonderful! My mother in law lives near a (rapidly shrinking) woods, and there are five wild turkeys who keep visiting her birdfeeder. I saw one come up on her back porch when we were visiting. whoa -- a little too fearless for my taste. But beautiful, yes.

  7. A good looking rafter of turkey you've got there. Ours are harassed by our dogs Biscuit and Sandy so they never leave the fringe of the pasture. I would enjoy having them closer. It's still awesome to hear them calling.

    By the way your recipe for the swiss chard/artichoke dip has been well received and put to good use here. Thanks.

  8. When hub's grandparents had 100 acres in upstate NY, we used to get a glimpse of the few wild turkeys that would come out to the meadow. They are a site city kids just don't see. Mine got such a kick out of them.

  9. I always love popping in to see your beautiful little paradise! :) Great shot!!!

  10. Turkeys are pretty fierce, especially wild ones--they just fly on in and settle where they please. I live in a small town and nowadays only get to see wild turkeys when I venture out to my mom's place in rural Georgia.

    [wild turkey "gobble" noise]

  11. Oh I am so homesick for Mo. living here in Tx. there is no color and feel like Mo. Just found your site and I will be back. A will try your breads they look wonderful. Gayle

  12. I always suspect the wild turkeys here in Texas are talking bad about how we look or act when they are leaving the area after seeing us. Maybe it is the pause, look back at us, then the low throated "gobble" ( "She should nevah try to wear red like that!") that does it.

    We enjoy getting to see them near the Red River area and sometimes right in town at a rather large park that has some good sized wild areas people are not allowed into.

    Great blog, I enjoy reading it!

  13. Hi Everybody!
    I'm really enjoying all of your wild turkey stories. Thanks so much for taking the time to write. My apologies for not replying individually to each of your comments.

    And welcome new visitors! Thank you for all the kind words and the feedback on recipes. I really appreciate it.

  14. Ahh, my eyes zeroed in on the splashes of foliage in the background. How I miss it.

  15. I love, love, love your blog. Thanks for sharing the gorgeous photographs.

  16. Love the turkey shot- we have them too. I love how the male struts around and lets everyone know they are his girls! Lovely blog. I hope to keep visiting!

  17. Your turkeys and sheep are wonderful. We have lots of turkeys and deer here on our farm. They feed with the horses and don't even acknowledge them. Isn't it wonderful to live with nature?

  18. Here in southeastern Mass (home of Pilgrims!) we have lots of wild turkeys. Just at our barn there's a flock of 17. I think a couple of broods banded together. They like to rummage thru the manure pile, and all the diva show horses go nuts: "EEK!! It's after me! It wants to peck my bum! Quick- get me into the barn!!" The turkeys just stand there laughing.
    I love your photos!


December 2015 update: Hi! For some reason I can't figure out, Blogger hasn't been letting me leave comments on my own blog (!) for the last several months, so I've been unable to respond to your comments and questions. My apologies for any inconvenience! You're always welcome to email me: farmgirlfare AT gmail DOT com.

Hi! Thanks for visiting Farmgirl Fare and taking the time to write. While I'm not always able to reply to every comment, I receive and enjoy reading them all.

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