Wild turkeys keeping visitors on their toes at the Mud Lake Trail
If you are yearning to walk the trails around Mud Lake in the Britannia Conservation Area, be aware there are wild turkeys looking for mates. A gang of three have been chasing and pecking at visitors to the nature trail for weeks.
Their mating season occurs between late February and early March in the southern U.S., and in April here in the northern end of their range.
Wild turkeys stand more than a metre tall, have a wingspan of up 1.4 metres and can weigh more than 10 kilograms. They are strong flyers and roost in trees at night.
Friday, the NCC closed parts of the trail to keep the public away from the pesky poultry, with plans to live trap the birds and relocate them to a quieter place.
On Sunday, the signs were down and the trails were open but, to the surprise of many, the turkeys were there as well, chasing off visitors as they approached.
Christine Norman and her friends had heard about the aggressive gobblers and decided to check it out; they noticed the signs were down, so they ventured into the woods, expecting the fowl to have fled. Instead, they were confronted by the three large male turkeys strutting their stuff.
“They are intimidating. We might not get to do our planned route back to the coffee shop,” Norman said. “It reminds you that nature is all around us and maybe we are not top of the food chain everywhere because these guys are intimidating.”
After snapping some pictures, the group decided discretion is the better part of valor and retreated, leaving the trio of turkeys to search for springtime brides.
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