Setting Turkey. The Wait Ends.

For weeks, the turkey hen has been incubating her clutch of nine eggs.

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It’s a hot morning. She makes a quiet “chuck” call as I approach the deck railing, from which perch I look down to see how things are going.

She’s hot. Her beak is open, and she’s panting a little.

It must be hot under those feathers.

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Wait…what’s this?

Her posture is different.

There are broken eggshells showing under her chest.

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And that call she made was a new one…

There must be at least one chick, for her to have said what she did.

I look more carefully.


Look carefully…there’s a chick in this next photograph.

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I use the camera telephoto to get a closer view.

That call mom made…

She was saying, “Hide, shut up, and do not move.”.

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Doing what mom says can be a matter of life or death.

The chick or chicks have obeyed instantly and automatically.

Yes…there’s a little one!

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They’re all very still.

So I shall be still, too.

And I shall wait to see what happens next.

4 responses to “Setting Turkey. The Wait Ends.

    • They’ve been here for about forty years now. You couldn’t call them truly wild…”feral” would be more like it. Their numbers seem fairly stable, and aren’t huge, and they roam here and there. In the early spring they sometimes use our yard as a courting “lek”, and there can be 30-60 of them.

      • ew! There is a spot here where they do that. It is good to know that their numbers have been stable. We sort of wonder about that here. Ours are really feral too, but are not white like the feral turkeys in my neighborhood were. They are the color of wild turkeys.

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