Turkey Eggs!

We have a turkey hen who just recently started laying eggs.  The eggs are a bit larger than the chicken eggs and have a distinct brown spotting.   The yolks are also a bit larger, but the interesting difference is the shell and membrane are much denser, making your quick egg cracking maneuver on the side of the bowl, one of much more  force.   But other than that it is not too much different in taste.  We made some scrambled turkey eggs and chicken eggs side by side this morning and couldn’t taste a difference.
So, why don’t we see more turkey eggs for sale? A chicken hen will average laying about 300 eggs per year, while a turkey hen may only lay 100-115 and only within a specific period of 28-30 weeks.  Most turkey eggs are used to incubate and grow new turkeys. McMurray hatchery sells a dozen turkey eggs for close to $60!  For that price maybe I should be selling ours too!  Supposedly turkeys are great brooders and will sit on their eggs, but that has not been our experience yet.   The eggs take 28 days to hatch and turkey poults look very similar to baby chicks.  Thy have been just as fun to raise… well..that is, other than one big mishap.

Our turkeys with baby ducks this spring

Some fun turkey facts:

  • Astronauts Neil Armstrong and Edwin Aldrin ate turkey in foil packets for their first meal on the moon.
  • Turkeys’ heads change colors when they become excited.
  • Adult turkeys can have 3,500 feathers. Most turkey feathers are composted. Feathers are spread out on fields, then plowed under in the spring. The feathers decompose and fertilize the soil.
  • Turkeys can see movement almost a hundred yards away.
  • Toms grow a beard (long black feathers) in the middle of the chest (breast). Very few hens grow a beard.
  • Ben Franklin thought the North American wild turkey should be the national bird (rather than the Bald Eagle)
  • Wild turkeys can glide as far as a mile without flapping their wings. They can fly for short distances up to 88 km/hr (55 miles/hour). Wild turkeys can run 29 km/hr (18 miles/hour).

(facts courtesy of  Sackschools.ca)

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