They are here! Today we received from Hoover’s Hatchery 10 Assorted Domestic Turkeys (10 being the minimum order). We chose this specifically to get a mixture of breeds for the growing season (May-Oct / Jul-Dec). In this order we have:
Broad Breasted Bronze Turkey - Much like the Broad Breasted White, the Bronze is still as large and meaty as its counterpart. Because of its size it's hard for this breed to reproduce. Its size makes it the perfect bird to raise on your own for holiday gatherings. The mature female weight at 20 weeks is 23 pounds, and the males will mature at about 33 pounds.
Broad Breasted White Turkey - This turkey is one of the most common and largest breeds available in the United States. The Broad Breasted White's size makes it a great addition to any table. The mature female weight at 20 weeks is 25 pounds, and the males will mature at about 45 pounds.
Naragansset Turkey - The Naragansset Turkey originates in Naragansset Bay Rhode Island. It was there that this breed was standardized for production. These rare turkeys are medium sized and calm. The mature female weight at 20 weeks is 17 pounds and the males mature at 30 pounds.
Bourbon Red Turkey - This breed received its name from being popular in Bourbon County, Kentucky. The Bourbon Red is a rare heritage breed. It matures at 20 weeks. The female will mature at 16 pounds, and the male will mature at about 25 pounds.
These are strait run turkeys, which means they were not sexed. For the low price of $6.32 per bird and free shipping, we couldn’t go wrong with this deal!
SO… They are now snug as a bug in rug in their brooder. Take a look at this picture….
Notice that there are marbles in the food and water trays? There’s a reason for that! Right before chicks hatch, they absorb the remaining contents of yolk they are attached to, giving it the nourishment it needs to allow them up to 72 hours after hatching to live without food and water. This is why when you order live chicks from a hatchery in the mail, they come without food or water. They were literally born within 72 hours of you receiving them…
Placing these chicks in the brooder for the first time also means they will be eating starter feed and drinking water for the first time. The first hurdle to keep these little birds alive is showing them how to eat and drink. The easiest way to do that is to add marbles to the food and water.
Both chicken and turkey chicks are very curious creatures. When they see the marble, their curiosity overwhelms them and they just have to know what they are. So, they peck at them… Because of the smooth glass surface, when they do peck, their beaks will slip past the surface and into the water and/or food. Once they realize that it’s food or water, then they start to eat and drink.
Congratulations, you just made it past Step #1 of your animals not dying as soon as you get them!