Turkey Populations by Grant Woods
A few weeks ago we found a turkey nest while clearing some brush from the edge of a bedding area to create a new hidey-hole food plot. The nest had six eggs in it at the time.
I put a Reconyx trail camera with video capabilities on the nest and have enjoyed watching what hens do while “nesting.” I’ve also been thrilled that a predator hasn’t destroyed the nest so far! This hen is beating the odds. Researchers have published that 50 to 90% (depending on the study areas) of all turkey nests are destroyed by predators!
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The list of predators includes raccoons, opossums, skunks, bears, coyotes, bobcats, crows, hawks, many species of snakes, etc. It seems almost every critter likes turkey eggs!
Hens typically lay 8 to 12 eggs and average from less than 1 to 1.4 poults will survive! In other words, on average 9 out of 10 nests or young poults will be killed before they are 6 months old and out of 10 nests survive.
Clearly every turkey nest is valuable. I look forward to checking this camera again and hope this hen is successful at hatching these 6, if not more as time passes, eggs.
Growing and hunting critters together,