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Friday Unfavorite: Wild Turkeys

April 28th, 2017

We have quite a population of wild turkeys in the area, the flocks seem to get bigger and bigger every year. Which means they eat more and more. Of course vegetable gardens provide a delicious smorgasbord for wild animals and a flock of 25 or so wild turkeys can do some damage rather quickly.

This year I’m finally breaking down and putting metal fencing around both edible garden spaces. It won’t be a permanent structure quite yet, that will happen in 7-10 years. In the mean time, I need something to keep the birds out. Last year I lost a good amount to the turkeys. We have no summer broccoli because they ate the entire first and second plantings of it. Our Spring lettuce crops were decimated as well. At the moment, I’m protecting tender plants with low tunnels and plastic until we can get the fence up around the garden. Hopefully this will help deter the turkeys from eating the vegetables.

What’s your worst garden pest?

3 Comments to “Friday Unfavorite: Wild Turkeys”
  1. Victoria on April 28, 2017 at 11:58 am

    Does Tara think the turkeys are just big chickens.. and does not bother them?

    Reply to Victoria's comment

  2. Nebraska Dave on April 29, 2017 at 9:48 am

    Susy, you do know that wild turkeys can fly. I have flocks of wild turkeys that roam around my garden. I don’t grow the leafy vegetables at Terra Nova Gardens and the turkeys don’t seem to bother the tomatoes, green peppers, strawberries, eggplant, onions, potatoes, pumpkins, or squash. In fact I see them as a plus because I have not had a bug problem in the five years of gardening at Terra Nova Gardens. Even with woods surrounding my property, I’ve not seen one single tick. I give all the credit to the turkeys. Before I had the six foot wooden fence completed, I could see that they had been scratching in the dirt around my plants but they never bothered the harvest on the plants.

    Now the deer, raccoons, and groundhogs were a different story. They are all vegetarians and believed that it was great that a buffet garden was grown just for them. I knew when I started gardening on this land that fences would be important. The solution to keep all the wild life under control has been a triple layer of fencing. A six foot wooden fence for the deer, and a four foot chicken wire fence with portable electric fence inside the wooden fence around the raised beds. It worked great last year so I expanded it. Terra Nova Gardens is now 12 beds strong with room for a few more next year.

    Have a great day battling the turkeys.

    Nebraska Dave

    Reply to Nebraska Dave's comment

    • Susy on May 1, 2017 at 11:36 am

      They do, but they don’t fly over my fences, they seem to only fly if they feel threatened and not to get in to the gardens to eat.

      Reply to Susy's comment


This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.

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