WILD TURKEY, TAME TURKEY by Dorothy Hinshaw Patent


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Outstanding color photos and an informative text describe both the native wild bird that Ben Franklin suggested as our national symbol and the domestic turkey, scientifically raised for holiday consumption. There are striking differences between their appearances and life cycles. The wily wild turkeys, hunted nearly to extinction by early settlers, are now making a comeback thanks to conservation efforts. Measuring as much as four feet from beak to tall, these sleek, bronze-feathered striders can reach ground speeds of 25 m.p.h., while their six-foot wingspan enables them to glide at 50 miles an hour. In contrast, the commercially raised white turkey is so heavily breasted that it can't fly; it can't even reproduce without artificial insemination. In fact, two strains of turkeys are raised: one produces eggs, the other birds for meat. Seven to ten thousand of the docile, stupid birds are raised in a single barn. Sharp beak tips are snipped off and claws are clipped to prevent injury; antibiotics prevent disease; and an enriched diet promotes growth, from egg to table in 19 weeks. The wealth of detail and well-chosen, vivid photos make this an unusually attractive science and nature title. Index.

Pub Date: Oct. 23rd, 1989
Page count: 57pp
Publisher: Clarion/Houghton Mifflin