Both wild and captivated turkeys indeed have some differences in living, including foods that they eat. So, what do wild turkeys eat? They indeed have more varieties of foods to eat in the wild.
Living the wild forces them to live and survive well. They both hunt and forage to find foods. They can be found easily in forests that feature lots of hardwoods. They also hang around at fields, pastures, orchards, etc.
As long as there is an open and wide area, wild turkeys can live healthily. Also, that area should have plenty of food sources. In North America, their population is high, therefore.
Foods for Adult Wild Turkeys
Wild turkeys live healthily around mature forests or areas with lots of woody plants, nuts, fruits, and mast. For the information, their foods vary depending on the season. It is affected by food supplies in nature.
For example, in spring, they love to eat grasses and leaves. On the other hand, they would look for berries and other types of fruits in the fall. At the time, they also eat insects and seeds.
When it comes to favorite foods, wild turkeys are likely to eat acorns. As alternatives, they are fond of beechnuts. This becomes the best alternate diet when acorn is scarce.
Unlike domestic or captivated turkeys, the wild ones don’t require formulated or commercial foods. According to experts, the best way to breed this animal is to let them forage freely in fields or nature.
A wide choice of foods helps wild turkeys to live properly in nature. Despite the fact, they need to dwell in an area that consists of lots of water. This way, they can access both foods and water to reproduce.
Finding a good shelter is required, too. The purpose is to roost and nest comfortably while mating and resting. Later, in early spring and summer, they can start hunting small foods like insects and fruits.
The Chicks’ Diets
Baby turkeys are called poults and they are considered self-sufficient. It is because they can find nutritious foods by themselves. These include spiders and other protein-rich bugs, which are their prime foods.
During the first month, chicks would eat mostly those. Later, once they get bigger, they can forage independently and in a fast manner. Still, they need a guide from the mother to find the best food sources.
Other foods that they love include small reptiles and mollusks. All of these provide sufficient protein to grow well and healthy! They can also adapt well to the environment, including eating what is available.
Baby turkeys are also pre-social. They are born in a progressive state, which means they have feathers and can move easily. These birds can even run swiftly and hunt foods well.
Despite their independence, small turkeys still need protection from their parents. It is because they can’t defend themselves against predators. Fortunately, orphans turkeys can live safer in a captivating center.
For baby turkeys that live in a shelter, they can eat supplemental foods with the help of humans. These include winter wheat, clover, grasses, and legumes! Wild grapes are good for them, too, somehow.
How Wild Turkeys Hunt
Adult wild turkeys have a better hunting ability than chicks, without a doubt. They forage continuously to find new foods or snacks. Their favorite time to hunt is in the early morning. They also go out at dusk!
Sometimes, food is scarce. This condition forces them to choose other times for foraging. It can be any time of day! Parents who have lots of hungry and young chicks would work even harder at the time.
As for the foraging method, they use their feet for scratching. Next, they would peck at the land to find foods. Lastly, they would swallow this whole!
Wild turkeys have various diets and these depend on several factors, including season and geography. They adjust the choice of foods based on availability. They choose different foods when something is scarce.
They have a special chamber called proventriculus that helps them break down the foods. This animal doesn’t have teeth, after all. This chamber gets acid from the stomach to soften materials.
The next important information is female wild turkeys don’t gobble! That means only male turkeys gobble up. This method is meant to show their territory and warn their competitors (to show dominance).
It is known that wild turkeys have healthy appetites and they are fond of various foods. So, what do wild turkeys eat? They love to eat grasses, plants, insects, berries, and other foods.
They are also famous for their adaptability. They may choose other foods when the prime ones are scarce. Simply said, wild turkeys visit and forage an area with abundant foods.
On the other hand, they may leave that area when the food sources are running out to find new places with other options of foods. The good thing is that baby wild turkeys are self-sufficient or pre-social.