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If you’re a passionate bird lover, or bird hunter, then it’s very likely you know the turkey. Have you ever thought about what a group of turkeys is called? A flock of turkey is known as a rafter. In the simplest description, this bird looks like a large member of the peacock genre.
Since back in the days, I have lived to admire this bird’s beauty and flock organization. I used to visit a neighboring bush and got a chance to learn something new each time. Still to date the nostalgia keeps on haunting me. That’s why I feel an inevitable pleasure to put this write-up. This article covers unusual aspects of turkeys which probably you never knew.
The technical terminology for a group of turkeys is rafter. However, the common terms are gang or just a flock of turkeys. Rafter is the main jargon used to describe a large group of turkeys, mostly the domesticated version. Also, some people use a brood of turkeys though this is a rare term.
In the United States, these birds are domesticated on a large scale. They are popular due to their flavorful meat, and many people make their barbecue.
Additionally, they are active creatures and hence their meat is leaner than chicken. Also, they live in social groups and help to protect each other from predators and allow easy food gathering. Isn’t that fascinating?
A Group of Turkey Birds
Different Names for a Group of Turkeys
As I have already hinted, it all depends on whether the turkeys you’re talking about are wild or domesticated. In this respect, people use different terms interchangeably to mean a group of turkeys. Here are some of the names;
Although this is a rare term, you won’t be any wrong if you use it to mean a group of turkeys. Well, when turkeys walk as a group, they look like typical gangsters. Hence, it is a slang used by kids and at times, adults. Moreover, turkeys can be very vicious as a group if you tend to threaten them and will deal with you as a group while defending themselves.
The word rafter is the technical term for a group of turkeys. Many poultry experts and domestic breeders use this term to mean a collection of turkeys. But, this isn’t a term you should use it for wild turkeys. I consider it a specific term for breeding group turkeys for commercial purposes. Most US poultry breeders use this term most of the time.
The name comes from Greek terminology that means – stitch together. Therefore, this is not a new term, but its usability is somewhat exclusive. James Lipton, who is a famous bird enthusiast, has used the term rafter in most of his writings about turkey. Thus, from the educational perspective, the rafter is the proper term if you want to sound professional.
Is this term the most commonly used? If you use it to mean a group of turkeys, have you ever thought of its correctness? Like the old saying- birds of the same feather flock together. It’s perhaps the oldest term that has been used to mean a group of birds flying together. I consider it a generalized term that can mean a group of any type of flying or non-flying birds. This word however isn’t exclusive for birds only; you can use it to refer to a group of sheep or goats.
Incorrect Words That We Sometimes Use for a Group of Turkeys
Wrong terms used to refer to a group of turkeys include Gooble and Gaggle. Well, Gaggle refers to a group of geese because they usually make gagging sounds. Also, Gooble doesn’t have any connection with turkeys. The two terms shouldn’t be used to refer to a group of turkeys.
What is a Group of Turkey’s Young Ones Called?
Do you still call turkeys baby a baby bird? It’s about time you realized the correct thing. The group’s name is none other than chicks or poults.
Well, a poult is a turkey’s baby which is less than four months old. They always move behind or beside the mother for protection from predators and feeding. The term poult is common when referring to domesticated baby turkeys. For the wild turkeys, you can call the young turkeys, chicks.
However, most people use these terms, interchangeably as long as they pass the message. The important thing to know is that there are no hard rules for naming these baby turkeys.
How Many Turkeys Make a Rafter?
Turkeys are social creatures which live in groups. A typical group of turkeys is made of up to about 30 turkeys. This number can be more or less depending on the scenario.
These creatures love to live and fly together as a large group. Well, this social life is more prevalent in domesticated than wild turkeys. The term rafter is processed from the word raft, which means a large collection.
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Frequently Asked Questions
What’s a Female Turkey Called?
A female turkey is called a hen while a male is called a gobbler or Tom. They look almost the same, but the female features bare skin on the head as opposed to the male, which features sagging wrinkled skin below its neck. Also, a male turkey is bigger than the female.
What are the Six Types of Turkeys?
Osceola Wild Turkey
This type of turkey is mostly found in Florida and is characterized by long spurs. They’re smart and move a bit faster than other wild turkeys. You probably have some doubts in the statement “they are smart” since you may have heard rumors that they are dumb and drown in water. Well, this is not the case, check out the article Do Turkey Drown in the Rain to find out more.
These are considered the hardest to hunt. Have you checked out the Beginner’s Guide to Turkey Hunting? It might make it a bit easier for you.
Eastern Wild Turkey
These are perhaps the most populated subspecies. Well, these can be found in about 38 states of the United States. Also, they boast the strongest gobbles, and the longest beards and their tail feathers feature a chestnut shade of brown.
Rio Grande Wild Turkey
This turkey subspecies is mostly found in dry areas of western states. You’ll know them with their tail feathers which feature tan tips.
Merriam’s Wild Turkey
This type is most prevalent in the mountainous side of the west. They live in the Rocky Mountains, and one fascinating fact is that they have the weakest gobbles of the subspecies. The Merriam’s turkey have white –tipped-breast feathers, short beards and short spurs.
Gould’s Wild Turkey
These are similar to Merriam’s wild turkeys only that have average gobbles, spurs and beards and have light-colored tail feathers. They are prevalent in mountainous regions of Mexico, New Mexico and Arizona.
Ocellated Wild Turkey
This type of turkey is perhaps the most beautiful of all. It is mostly found in northern Belize, Yucatan Peninsula of Mexico, and the El Petén region of northern Guatemala. They feature sparkling and iridescent coloring. Also, they give out a drumming sound and then release a high-pitched gobble. These turkeys have no beards at all.
Are Turkeys From Turkey?
Turkey birds aren’t from Turkey, and there is no connection between the two. In fact, the country doesn’t have any native turkey species. What’s even more surprising is that Turks don’t call these birds “turkey.”
Can Turkeys Fly?
They can be considered flight and flightless birds. Well, they can soar up to 55 miles per hour to enable short bursts.
This aspect also depends on the size and weight of the bird. If it’s light enough, then flying is no big deal. With this in mind, wild turkeys in most cases do fly thanks to their light and lean bodies. They fly for very short distances and very low to the ground, and mostly they fly when searching for a tree to roost.
As birds passionate love, I hope you’ve found this article helpful. It’s now easy for you to call turkeys by their correct names. It is now clear that a group of wild turkeys and domesticated versions possess different group names the same with their babies’ group names. People have for long used these names interchangeably without knowing.
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36 years old, been hunting and fishing my entire life – love the outdoors, family, and all kinds of hunting and fishing! I have spent thousands of hours hunting hogs and training hunting dogs, but I’m always learning new stuff and really happy to be sharing them with you! hit me up with an email in the contact form if you have any questions.