Nov 28-07

Past-E-Mail: Cam Notes - 2007: November: Nov 28-07
Survivors    ...scroll down to share comments
Photos by Bill Haller
Strutting their stuff    ...scroll down to share comments
Photos by Bill Haller

Mary Drew at Pasty Central (Mdrew) on Wednesday, November 28, 2007 - 08:40 am:

A turkey at the end of November is pretty much considered a Survivor, but this scene captured by Bill Haller, clearly shows a flock of turkeys that are thumbing their nose at fate on the Crystal Falls/Covington stretch of highway. So they made it past Thanksgiving without adorning someone's dinner table, but isn't it pushing their luck to be crossing the road like this? Good thing all Bill was interested in, was shooting them with his camera.

The second photo is a capture from an earlier date that I couldn't resist adding today. I love how the lead turkey is all puffed out and proud. I'm not sure when hunting season for these birds begins and ends, but they better be careful, because lots of folks eat turkey for Christmas too!

By Brian Thomas (Bttc) on Wednesday, November 28, 2007 - 08:53 am:

They made it! Well Christmas dinner is still ahead ;-)

By Richard L. Barclay (Notroll) on Wednesday, November 28, 2007 - 08:55 am:

One of those birds can stop your heart when they take to the air from a ditch next to where you are riding your bicycle in somewhat of a daze!

By kay Moore (Mskatie) on Wednesday, November 28, 2007 - 08:59 am:

Turkeys are such fasinating critters. Wonderful eyesight I understand. Would like to see a picture of them in a tree as they're suppose to be quite the flyers! But I still think they were better off not becoming our national bird like some thought they should be!

By Janie T. (Bobbysgirl) on Wednesday, November 28, 2007 - 09:05 am:

A few years back a man was driving down the interstate in our metro area, windows down, when a wild turkey flew right into the front passenger side window, this guy wound up in the ditch and walked away with minor injuries, the turkey got out when the back door was opened.

By Marsha, Genesee/Aura (Marsha) on Wednesday, November 28, 2007 - 09:06 am:

Sounds like you've been there, Richard! We have lots of turkeys down here.

Anyone remember WKRP in Cincinnati when someone had the bright idea to throw turkeys out of a plane for Thanksgiving or something, and discovered they weren't meant to fly? Do I have the right show and plot? All I remember is the turkeys didn't fare too well.

By Brenda Leigh (Brownmoose) on Wednesday, November 28, 2007 - 09:07 am:

Those birds roost in the trees at night. I will never forget when my husband first told me that. I thought he was telling a fib...but sure enough several days later they appeared on our property.
I kept a vigilant watch..and it was true, right at dusk,the lead bird flew and the rest followed right through the thicket of the swamp to the high trees for safety.

By Rowdy (Roudymi) on Wednesday, November 28, 2007 - 09:10 am:

Marsha, I remember that episode. I think the turkeys were frozen.

By Capt. Paul (Eclogite) on Wednesday, November 28, 2007 - 09:23 am:

Why did the Turkey cross the road???

By Uncle Chuck @ Little Betsy (Unclechuck) on Wednesday, November 28, 2007 - 09:26 am:

To get to the other side?

By John W Anderson (Wd8rth) on Wednesday, November 28, 2007 - 09:32 am:

"As god is my witness, I though turkey's could fly" One if the best line from WKRP. Wild turkeys can fly. Domestic turkey raises on farm and pens cannot. Just this hunting season I was walk back to camp after the pm hunt. I heard a loud crash and saw a big turkey fall from it's perch.

By Shirley Waggoner (Shirlohio) on Wednesday, November 28, 2007 - 10:18 am:

You're right, Marsha, it was "WKRP in Cincinnati".....and nope, they weren't frozen.....but in case PETA is reading this, the story was purely birds were hurt during filming. ;-)

By Heikki (Heikki) on Wednesday, November 28, 2007 - 10:47 am:

The wild turkey population has really flourished down here in Door County, WI. Several years ago I hunted them. During one autumn hunt, I found a tall beech tree they used as a roost. Not wanting to shoot one from its roost....I guess it's legal but not ethical....I decided to sit a few yards from the tree and see what happens. Just before dusk, many hens and jakes walked to the bottom of the tree and then flew up to a lower branch, and from there to higher branches. When the tree was heavily enough populated (circa 15-20 birds!), it was nearly dark, so I decided to leave. Trying not to disturb them, I tried to not crack twigs under foot. Try as I would, it was next to impossible with all the underbrush, etc. Not one left its roost. I then realized how they were nearly hunted to extinction years ago. Anyone wanting a turkey dinner the next day could easily take one from its roost. I imagine subsistence hunters used that method during the olden days, and because it was so easy, they were over-hunted. It's a different matter when they're on the ground. It has been said a deer will look at a man (sitting) and wonder how a stump got there. A turkey will look at a stump and wonder how a man got there! The spring hunt is a challenge and the most rewarding, however. One has to be able to duplicate the calls of a hen very well for success.

By Capt. Paul (Eclogite) on Wednesday, November 28, 2007 - 11:16 am:

Wild turkeys can really fly, despite their large size. They remind me of a B-52 coming through the forest though. I have been hunting many times and watched them fly through a forest so thick I wouldn't walk through it.

Oh and btw, why did the Turkey cross the road??

Because everyone else was chicken!!

By Cheryl Rozman (Cotton) on Wednesday, November 28, 2007 - 11:40 am:

A few years ago I was sitting in my living room & out of my peripheral vision I could see something move on our deck. There outside of the patio door were 4 big turkeys just walking around. A couple of them walked up to the door & looked inside. I watched them closely for a few minutes then I moved slowly to get my camera. In the meantime before I had a chance to catch the moment they had gotten bored & moved on. Darn!!!I've seen them many times since but never on our deck. I know I couldn't shoot one then eat it.

By Kathyrn Laughlin (Kathyl) on Wednesday, November 28, 2007 - 12:49 pm:

We watched that WKRP episode after Thanksgiving dinner (we have a DVD). And speaking of great lines, Jennifer told an irate caller "Well, lots of turkeys don't make it through Thanksgiving".

By CAL, Oshkosh WI (Cal) on Wednesday, November 28, 2007 - 12:52 pm:

My parents in Menominee have turkeys that visit the yard. I have seen the birds come on a run from the edge of the yard when my mom went out and threw them some dry corn. They will come within a couple feet of her to get it

By Michael Du Long (Mikie) on Wednesday, November 28, 2007 - 01:01 pm:

When Precious was having therapy for her broken neck i would go to the Franklin Cider Mill and feed the ducks in the creek. After a while they would come right up to me as soon as they saw me get out of the van. I would collect stale bread and stand there everyday for several months while she was being worked on. Several of the ducks would let me hand feed them. Son told me I am getting old and senile since I sit in the park feeding the birds.

By Heikki (Heikki) on Wednesday, November 28, 2007 - 03:12 pm:

More on wild turkeys......a couple winters ago, I observed 4 turkeys feeding on the buds of cedar shrubs in the back yard. I thought it would be neat to see more, so started placing cracked corn on the driveway. Several days later, had 14 dining on the driveway! Needless to say, they left more than their footprints behind, and the driveway began to take on the appearance of a barnyard. That's when I stopped feeding them! LOL

By Janie T. (Bobbysgirl) on Wednesday, November 28, 2007 - 03:39 pm:

I have known a few people that have drank wild turkey.

By Paul Oesterle (Paulwebbtroll) on Wednesday, November 28, 2007 - 03:47 pm:

The turkey population has really exploded. You see them everywhere! I take care of about a 10 acre cemetery. There is a woodlot behind the cemetery and a creek runs by it on the west side. There are 15-30 turkeys in the cemetery every day. They scratch in the straw that I cover the new graves with to help the grass seed get started. They are not spooked by me working there. I can be working within 75-100' of them. I deer humt in the Marion, MI. area. Lots of them there also. 10-15 years ago, I was sitting in my blind in the hardwoods on one side of a open pasture. The turkeys could be heard all day across that field in the low ground along the Middle Branch river. About 4:30PM I heard this awful noise. The turkeys were flying across the open field and trying to land in the hardwood trees right above my head! When they tried to land on the branches above me, the branches would break and the birds would come tumbling down to the ground around me! It was hysterical. They would get on their feet, shake themselves off, lookup into the trees and then fly up to a branch and then fly up to a higher branch. After several minutes they got settled and it was time for me to leave the woods. When I left my blind of course they flew out of the tree to do their thing all over again! It was quite the spectacle. I remember the WKRP turkey episode also.

By Pam Traver (Fruitport) on Wednesday, November 28, 2007 - 03:51 pm:

We have a lot of wild T.'s down here walking across the road.... I see crossing the street on busy Rd into Fruitport off Expressway on way to my St. on Brooks Rd... and often in the State Park on Lk MI - P.J. Hoffmaster where I go to walk daily when away from Lk Superior...

By Snowman (Snowman) on Wednesday, November 28, 2007 - 04:57 pm:

I could go for a little Wild Turkey right now.

By kosk in Toronto (Koskintoronto) on Wednesday, November 28, 2007 - 05:42 pm:

Wild turkey is pretty tasty. I had some one year in Plymouth, Mass.

So Heikki...what else do wild turkeys eat in the winter. Oddly
enough this was the topic of conversation for part of our trip UP
last week for Thanksgiving.

By Paul Roberts (Grizzlyadams) on Wednesday, November 28, 2007 - 05:45 pm:

Curious. Doesn't PETA stand for People Eating Tasty Animals? Just wondered. :-)

By Snowman (Snowman) on Wednesday, November 28, 2007 - 06:59 pm:

PETA = Please Enjoy Turkey Anytime

By Just me (Jaby) on Wednesday, November 28, 2007 - 07:15 pm:

PETA = People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals

By Heikki (Heikki) on Wednesday, November 28, 2007 - 07:55 pm:


Haven't made a study of wild turkey eating habits, but have observed them scratching among fallen leaves for anything edible (worms, seeds, etc) in the hardwoods. They are also hardy 'gleaners' of corn stubble, out there scratching away on the coldest, windiest days of winter. In fact, as the winter wears on and food becomes more scarce, they become less sensitive to the presence of man. Had about 50 birds within 100 yds of our mail box one late winter day, and they just kept feeding even though I stood and watched them for a bit while getting the mail. I suppose they'd eat anything in the toughest of times, even tree bark.

By David Hiltunen (Davidcorrytontn) on Wednesday, November 28, 2007 - 07:59 pm:

I treat animals as they do have rights.They have the right to be seasoned with salt & pepper.

By Marsha, Genesee/Aura (Marsha) on Wednesday, November 28, 2007 - 08:51 pm:

Who woulda thought a turkey picture would inspire so much conversation?!!! Too funny, David. If you'd said ketchup or gravy you would've had to put that comment on a different page!

By Uncle Chuck @ Little Betsy (Unclechuck) on Wednesday, November 28, 2007 - 09:16 pm:

Snowman, you and I would be like gasoline & matches!

By kosk in Toronto (Koskintoronto) on Wednesday, November 28, 2007 - 09:31 pm:

Thanks, Heikki. I'll pass that info. on to the other passengers in
the car.

By Walter P McNew (Waltermcnew) on Wednesday, November 28, 2007 - 09:42 pm:

ben franklin wanted to name the turkey the national bird but his wife told him to go fly a kite., witch i guess he did.

By Ken ja Mimi from da UP (Kenjamimi) on Wednesday, November 28, 2007 - 10:51 pm:

The darn wild turkeys have parts of my lawn all dug up, scratching for bird seed that falls from the feeders. But they sure do fly nicely. They look kinda dumb sitting up in the trees on the skinniest branches that bend way down. I think they're getting used to me chasing them away. When I get too close, that's when they take to the air. When I make noise by the window they'll run about 20 ft and sneak around the lilics and the maple tree and come back. Scared up a partridge or pheasant from the ditch when I walked by on my stroll this afternoon.

By Heikki (Heikki) on Wednesday, November 28, 2007 - 11:25 pm:

Just one more.....there are some turkey calls that are inserted into one's mouth....on the palate. They are flexible semicircles with a thin membrane that takes up a portion of the straight edge, and are called diaphram calls. When properly located within the mouth and the correct amount of air blown over the thin membrane and manipulated by tongue and lips, chirps, clucks, and peeps sound identical to the turkey hen's call.......but that's with a lot of practice. It has been said that good ol' boys in our southern climes take their turkey hunts very seriously, and some will go as far as having their two front teeth removed to further enhance their calling technique. So next time you see Bubba squirting a stream of Red Man tobacco juice a considerable distance, keep in mind he probably didn't lose those bread hooks in a fight or due to poor dental hygiene. ;-)

By Lori Houle (Runnerlori) on Thursday, November 29, 2007 - 08:01 am:

heeheehee...hey, Capt Paul, thanks for the turkey/chicken joke! They are my favorite and never fail to make me giggle! I absolutely love that one. "why did the Turkey cross the road??
Because everyone else was chicken!!" Too funny... And speaking of turkeys, My daughter was just telling me on Tuesday that she saw a flock of wild turkeys on Miller Road in the Swartz Creek area here in lower Michigan. And a friend of mine driving from Detroit yesterday saw a pheasant along one of the side streets there and then saw 6 deer in the median when the lodge and 696 merge. Poor deer had no place to go...I wonder if they got out of there without causing any traffic accidents.

By Bob Gilreath (Bobg) on Thursday, November 29, 2007 - 11:29 am:

Used to be I had to go near Amasa before i would see
any turkeys, but with the mild winters we've been
having they have been moving steadily north.

I've seen them in the keweenaw now.

But with the way it is outside, they may rethink this
migration and head back SOUTH!


By Russell E. Emmons (Russemmons) on Thursday, November 29, 2007 - 02:02 pm:

Turkeys have been expanding and taking back their old original ranges all over MI in recent years. We've had as many as 17 in our yard and we are a scant 30 miles from the Detroit Metro area! By roosting in trees they are safe from Coyotes and alike predators. I've seen Wild Turkeys fly at tree-top height and as far as 1000 or so feet distance across fields!
>>>> Last year we did an Audubon Christmas Bird Count (CBC) up in and around Bellaire MI. A huge flock was right in downtown right around the Antrim county building stopping traffic! (a pic in my gallery)
There is a family owned business in Capac that makes a Turkey call from wood in the form of a hollow box with 2 handles, one to hold it, one you scrape across the lid and the sound is exact!

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