Saturday, February 27, 2010

Eastern Wild Turkey Fight

I have seen Eastern Wild Turkey gobblers almost daily for the past few weeks. While the birds mostly cruise the meadows and woodlands in search of food, they do sometimes engage in some very interesting behavior. In this case two mature gobblers engaged in a fight last Saturday morning, which lasted about 19 minutes. I have seldom seen an encounter as intense as this one. Coy of Country Captures was photographing with me and documented the incident in much greater depth with still images than I did, as I was shooting video. Please visit his blog for a series of posts, which documents this amazing encounter.

I have seen the birds fly at each other and fight by "flogging", on several occasions, but this encounter was much more like a wrestling match, with the birds using their beaks to gain strategic holds, and entwining the necks together to exert leverage on each other.

I did take a few still photographs while the turkeys were locked together and this is a tightly cropped portion of one of the better ones, which shows how they can grasp another birds head.

Mature Gobblers Locked In Combat-Note Snow Flying In Air
Canon 7-D 100mm-400mmL

The specks of snow in the photograph are from the bird's feet scuffling about in the snow cover during the struggle.

For more Camera Critters photographs, Click Here!





14 comments:

This Is My Blog - fishing guy said...

Willard: What a neat story, boys will be boys.

Snap said...

Wonderful story and wonderful shot!

eileeninmd said...

Wonderful closeup!

Dina said...

This went on for 19 minutes?? I hope they are still alive! This photo is so dramatic.

Willard, you might get a laugh from hearing and seeing this deer:

http://www.evethenovel.com/prod/johndeer/index.html

myponderings said...

Turkeys are such interesting looking creatures... fighting or not... Wonderful shot of him.

KaHolly said...

That is "way cool"!! A very interesting and unique capture! ~karen

Carletta said...

Oh my, I've seen them chase each other but nothing this aggressive. Thanks for sharing Willard - terrific capture.
I'll pop over to Coy's for sure.
Carletta’s Captures.

HANNIBAL said...

I saw Coy's photos, and wondered if you took video! Seriously cool!

JimB said...

This is an outstanding shot!! Turkeys have been a real challenge for me to photograph and you did superb here!

Jim

√ Abraham said...

The gobblers (as we called them at home) did fight and this one looks like he has the best grip on the other.

This is truly "head to head" combat in the animal world. I suppose neither one got hurt but I am betting the back of their throats are going to be sore for a while and the beaks must be touching that sensitive area.

Kritter Keeper said...

i never see my gobblers, just the hens...so very interesting! thanks to you for being such a great and patient photographer!

Ken said...

Killer shot. Nice work. Enjoyed catching up. Blue Skies.

imac said...

Gee Willard, tis a great shot and tale,tail,lol.

Thanks for your continued visits and comments.
A week in wales now showing on my blog.

Kekiinani said...

Oh my gosh! That is amazing. Great shot but kind of eerie.. or scary not sure which.. :) Aloha, Renee :)