Bush turkey: Everything you should know about these birds.

The wild turkey is a bird that belongs to the family Phasianidae, of the galliform species, it is also known by other names such as ocellated turkey, ocellated turkey and its scientific name is Meleagris ocellata. Males are usually polygamous and have a complex nuptial courtship.

It is a large bird and is hunted because its meat is consumed and this has led this animal to be in serious danger of extinction and the imminent destruction of its habitat.Stay and learn all about this beautiful bird.

Characteristics of the wild turkey.

It is a bird of good size measures approximately 90 centimeters approximately, the skin that covers the face is gray, the throat in a red tone, the beak is black and the legs are gray, the tail is dark brown, the rest of the plumage is composed of a mixture of colors between bronze and green iridescent color.

The head of both sexes is blue and have a kind of warts that are orange or red much more visible in males and these also have a fleshy blue color that looks like a crown, this crown when the mating season comes the colors are accentuated and widens and becomes much brighter. The eyes are surrounded by a kind of ring of red skin. Neither male nor female has a beard, unlike the northern turkey, which does. There are some known subspecies of the bush turkey and these are Penelope obscura bronzina, Penelope obscura obscura obscura, Penelope obscura bridgesi.

Behavior.

These birds are polygamous which means that they do not stay with only one partner, in this case we are talking about the males. The males that are younger have spurs that are usually long and thin. They prefer to be on the ground and if they feel that they are being stalked they would rather run than fly to escape from danger. They can fly and do so powerfully, but do so only for short distances.

They spend the night in tall trees and in groups of the same species, so they feel safe and away from predators.

Feeding.

The wild turkey is a good sized bird which always requires sufficient amounts of food, in fact most of its time is spent on the ground and therefore always looking for something to eat. It feeds basically on what it usually gets in its habitat, which is the bush, such as seeds, grains, fruits, wild flowers, larvae and insects.

The feeding of turkeys in captivity is usually simple but it is no less important to contain the necessary ingredients for the wild turkey to obtain the necessary nutrients and thus avoid diseases that could cause health injuries. Good feeding as well as precautions regarding feeders and drinkers are of vital importance, and good hygiene must always be maintained.

Reproduction.

The wild turkey usually reproduces in the spring and summer, they do it through a courtship as any of their species. After mating they build their nest and they do it up in the trees even up to a height of 10 meters, it has the particularity that they make their nests in mountains or very dirty areas, so it will be much more difficult to locate them, for the nest they use materials such as small branches and leaves and it also has the shape of a platform.

The female lays 2 to 3 eggs in the cream-colored nest, the incubation is done by both parents equally, both collaborate in this process. After this time the eggs hatch and the care, breeding and feeding is done by the parents, the chicks will only leave the nest when they are old enough to become independent.

Distribution and habitat.

The wild turkey is very well distributed in the Yucatan Peninsula and in the states that are part of Mexico such as Quintana Roo, Campeche and Yucatan. It generally inhabits tropical or subtropical forests, wooded areas, low jungles where they feel at ease to live and get enough food. Being inhabitants of the bush they have the facility to get what to eat. They are birds that in captivity can adapt and be raised with tranquility.