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Living where we do (the eastern edge of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park), wildlife is common. Last night brought us gobbling turkeys.
This is the time of year when wild turkeys are locating nests. The males are making quite the racket – via gobbling – to attract hens for mating. We have a tom (a larger, more mature male) that seems to have staked out our area and a couple of younger jakes (smaller, younger males) calling out for the hens in the area.
The hens typically lay an egg a day during this period until they have a clutch of close to a dozen viable eggs. The poults hatch in late May to early June. The next couple of months are particularly challenging for the turkeys since many predators (raccoons, crows, skunks, opossum, etc.) eat the eggs and other predators (our resident bobcat, raccoons, fox, coyote, etc.) focus on the newly hatched poults. By mid-summer, the survivors will form large flocks of turkeys roaming the fields. (By the way, before someone makes a correction, a group of wild turkeys is called a flock. A group of domestic turkeys is called a rafter or gang).
All The Herd knows of this is lots and lots of gobbling is going on just out of sight.
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