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One of my favorite winter birds is the turkey. They usually come in flocks; we've had as many as nearly 50 come at one time. When this happens, it is usually 3 or 4 flocks coming together. With the ground covered by several inches of snow, they are hard-pressed to find any food to eat. So I give them some corn and maybe even throw in some black-oil sunflower seeds. They gratefully eat whatever I throw out to them since as ground-feeders, food is so scarce at this time.
Whether or not to feed wild turkeys is an on-going debate. Since I live in NH and wildlife.state.nh.us recommends cracked or whole corn, sunflower seeds, oats, wheat, or a turkey ration, I'm going to continue to feed them. I like seeing any kind of wildlife on my property. And if I can do something to get them through the winter months, I will buy a few bags of corn and also throw out some sunflower seeds while I'm at it.
Come spring, the turkeys disappear while they have their poults and raise them. Occasionally, if some of the turkeys have become more comfortable on my property, they will bring their young around. I love seeing the little ones running in the tall grass where they are mostly covered from hawks, etc. It is upsetting though, when a particular group shows up and each time there seems to be one or two fewer young among them. But again, I'll help them out to get the turkeys to adult size by throwing out a handful or two of corn and sunflower seeds. Of course, I'm also feeding the squirrels, but they need to eat, too. And then the hawks in our neighborhood I'm sure appreciate a plump squirrel to feed their young. Ah, the circle of life!
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