Turkeys have different noises as different forms of communication


Monday morning I woke up to the sunrise and the temperature was approaching 15 degrees. It’s 15 degrees Celsius. At the time I was watching the weather in London, where the metric system prevails.

When I first stirred, it was about 5am – 11am in London – and the temperature was closer to 70 degrees Fahrenheit here at home. The sun has not yet appeared. I woke up early, bent on watching Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II make her last voyage through the streets of London. The day began with a procession from Westminster Hall, where her casket was removed, to Westminster Abbey on a ceremonial rifle carriage for her funeral.

The procedures were everything I expected and more. The service took an hour – another procession followed to Buckingham Palace. About 45 minutes after the funeral, I heard a slight banging outside my open window. It was a turkey hen trying to get her little flock together. It was like grazing cats, they say. By the time she gathered them all and led them wherever they were going to forage that day, the Queen’s coffin-bearers were carrying her coffin from Westminster to put it on the carriage on which they had arrived.

At that point I heard a commentator mention that Piper did a great job on his end of service. A quick search and I discovered that His Majesty was awakened every morning by a bagpipe. It was her personal alarm.

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I am embarrassed to have to admit that the hen did a better job of getting my attention than her flock did. There’s just something about the turkey call – whether it’s Tom or a chicken – that I just can’t resist. I’d like to think the Queen would be thrilled to know that the turkey has outrun her lane.

Turks make a lot of different sounds, nothing like the sounds that come from bagpipes. However, they make sounds that vary from spring to fall. The Oregon Department of Fish and Game has a tutorial on their website that is comprehensive, long, and very informative.

The sound I heard outside my window was a shriek of collection. Scream comes in different forms. The collect cry is most common in the fall, when adult hens try to collect the husks that have wandered. But there are a number of other bundle cries they use as well.

Clack is also a basic turkey sound that can mean two things. It could be very attractive to another turkey. But the most common sound from a hen is the shriek. Toms yelp too, but it’s a lot bolder and seems to come off a wooden rasp. How many variations are there in Scream? We don’t have time to break that down here. But it is the cry of the gathering that will bring back the birds that have gone astray.

They use a number of other calls, all as a way to let each other know where they are, what they are doing and whether or not they need to be on high alert.

They will communicate using purring, a mixture of purring and purring, cuts, blows, and even the early morning tree call. This should be followed by the crack of flight. This is usually preceded by what appear to be concrete blocks tossed from the treetops as they emerge from the roosts.

Then, of course, there is the devouring. It’s especially impressive in the spring when Chief Tom flirts with the ladies. His devouring almost becomes a roar. He raises his head, his tail erect and raised, his wings almost flailing on the ground. It is enough to make you breathe excessively.

As if to cause me more embarrassment, as I was describing Chief Tom, I peeked out my office window and there were three Toms feeding right in front of me, including a bruise with a long beard.

DEP boat quote

Over the course of a year and a year later, the New York City Department of Environmental Protection deemed that dozens of boats had been “abandoned” at tank properties by fishermen. Eventually they are auctioned off to make way for fishermen who want to keep their boat in one of the tanks.

Boats are generally not new, and not always beautiful, but they are functional. Previously, auctions were conducted by inbox. This system has been discontinued and the auction is now taking place online.

The next auction will start October 3 and end October 12 through www.publicsurplus.com.

The boats are located at the DEP Downsville office in Delaware County, as well as the DEP’s Grahamsville office in Sullivan County. Each boat has multiple photos available online.

Each boat will contain multiple images for you to view online for the duration of the auction. Pictures of the boats are provided to allow bidding without having to see the boat in person. DEP will not display boat shows in person. To view the boats, simply type “Boats-DEP-BWS” in the search box. Each lot will have a unique part number titled G# for boats located in Grahamsville and D# for boats located in Downsville.

This is a good opportunity to catch a boat at an affordable cost if you enjoy tank fishing.

Bill Conners of the Federation of Fish and Game Clubs writes about foreign issues. Email: [email protected]