Monday, January 23, 2012

Plot Development Starts, Part 2 - Turkeys

Heritage turkeys are also on the menu for Baker Heritage Farms. Turkeys will be raised primarily for meat production (holiday feasts for the family, neighbors, friends, and church initially).The litter will be used to help fertilize our gardens as well as for making all natural compost. If successful, turkeys will be raised for sale in the future.

Our initial choice for Heritage turkey is the Broad Breasted Bronze Turkey.

Broad breasted bronze turkeys have been developed for meat. Their coloring is similar to that of the wild turkey, but the size and shape differ greatly. They are currently maintained entirely by artificial insemination (which means that they may not be raised long-term) as they have lost their ability to reproduce naturally due to their size.

By 28 weeks a young tom may already weigh 25 pounds. The Bronze has been the most popular turkey variety for most of American history. The American Poultry Association recognized the Bronze variety in 1874 and the ALBC currently lists the Bronze as critical.
  • Average Size: Young tom - 25 pounds; young hen - 16 pounds; old tom - 36 pounds; old hen - 20 pounds
  • Purpose: Meat production
  • Egg Color: Brown
  • ALBC: In need of conservation
Turkey Run

Once agan, the turkeys will be isolated from other animals, including the chickens, for health safety reasons. The turkey run will be between the house and the barn, providing easy access in all weather.

The run will be approximately 1,500 square feet and will contain shelter for the birds. It is anticipated that 15 straight run turkeys will be purchased by mid to late March. The pen is ready to be fenced once the shelter is completed.

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