Monday, January 10, 2011
Did You Know I Have Wild Turkeys?
Yes, I am the corn Corn Lady. Or the Turkey Lady. I’m sure my neighbors have a name for me.
We have wild turkeys that have been coming through our neighborhood for about 5 years now. They are usually the gobblers (males), as the hens are more skiddish than the males. I do get the females on occasion but they are less likely to come near me. I have to drop the corn under the tree and then back-up from the area. With the boys, I can get right up close and be in their space. I call them “my boys” and I cluck at them the way they cluck at me! We have a good relationship and I love having them. Until last winter, they used to go away all season and I would watch out my kitchen window as I did dishes looking for “my boys” to come home.
One spring the grass had grown real tall and I noticed that around our tree the grass was waving around in spirals. It was the strangest sight. I went onto the deck for a closer look and then spotted the mama hen. Her chicks weren’t quite tall enough to stick out above the tallest blades of grass – there were eight of them moving around in circles never straying too far from their mother. And all the neighborhood must have heard me exclaim “I have BABIES!”
See, I believe I called them to me. That’s a long story. But they are my buddies, MY boys. They are here to teach me something. I collect their feathers in the spring, I give some of them names, I watch them strut during mating season and try oh so hard to catch them on film as any proud mama would do! I even caught the mating ritual on video. Now let ME tell YOU about the BIRDS and the bees!
Anyway, as the blizzard hit Atlanta last night I said a prayer for my boys. I knew they wouldn’t be roosting this night in the tallest of Georgia pines like they usually do. This morning I had a loner hunkered down under the feeding tree…waiting. He started calling for me, which they’ll do if I don’t see them and go out right away “where is she, I’m hungry already!”. I went out with my bucket of corn and he ran at me and clucked at me – and I clucked back saying “here I am and I’ve brought you food and I’m glad you’re OK”.
And I love you, my boy.
Copyright © 2010 Joanne Schleier