It’s that time of year when we take a moment to admire the great turkey. Even though our relationship with these interesting birds tends to be of the vulturine variety, many people enjoy having them visit their yards.
Before we relay some tips for attracting wild turkeys to your property, it’s important to note that turkeys aren’t always the easiest guests. Wild turkeys can be loud, messy, gluttonous, territorial, and even dangerous. If you haven’t heard that great This American Life story about a turkey wreaking havoc on Martha’s Vineyard by literally attacking people, you should take a listen.
Live in a wooded area where turkeys frequent and still interested in getting these rambunctious birds into your yard? Read on.
Offer seeds, cracked corn, nuts, and berries
Turkeys eat a wide variety of foods, including everything from insects to crabapples. One way to attract wild turkeys is to set up a ground feeding station or use a platform feeder with cracked corn, nuts, and mixed birdseed. You may not want to encourage turkeys to go to the feeding stations you use for other species because turkeys can be territorial and drive away songbirds.
Plant native oaks and nut/berry producing plants
Even better than offering food to turkeys is to provide them with natural food sources. Not only will this make it easier on you and your wallet (feeding turkeys can be expensive) but it’s also great for the general ecosystem.