Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Wild Turkey at Julian

According to the San Diego County Bird Atlas (Unitt, 2004) there were several releases of Wild Turkeys into San Diego County since 1931. However, by the time of the last release in 1993, no progeny from the earlier releases remained. Since 1993 they have proliferated in the oak foothills in the middle of the county.

Wild Turkey
Wild Turkey. Julian, California. July 5, 2015. Greg Gillson.
As Unitt points out, the term "wild" is a bit liberal when discussing these birds. Rather than roaming about in the more wild areas of the county where hunting is permitted, these birds 'domesticated themselves' and came down into the parks, campgrounds, and rural back yards and ranches where they are afforded protection from hunters.

Two forms of Wild Turkey are those of the Eastern United States with a white tail tip and these Texas birds with a rusty tail tip. Most Wild Turkeys in the West are of the Texas form.

Wild Turkey