Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Turkeys Run Afoul in San Jose

Since the holidays, Wildlife Emergency Services has received a number of calls about a turkey at large in San Jose - near 1st Street and the 880. Callers expressed concern for the welfare of the animal, worried that it might get hit by a car.

Yesterday, Duane and Rebecca went to investigate, and found there are, in fact, TWO wild turkeys - a young male (also referred to as a jake) and young female (a jenny).

They both appear to be in good health, though somewhat habituated.

While it's not uncommon to see wild turkeys wandering city streets and neighborhoods that border wildland, it is unusual to see them so deep within a city limits. One theory is that someone in the neighborhood raised them from poults, then released them.

Unfortunately, the jake has developed a bad habit - he runs up to and chases passing cars!

It's possible he's reacting to the sound of the car's engine, or perhaps his reflection - or both. Regardless, it's a bad habit that will surely be his demise.

If the turkeys are allowed to remain, however, they will get killed - either by a car, a person, or a dog. We also believe they pose a risk to pedestrians and the motoring public, significant enough to warrant their removal.
e’re proposing to capture the birds this week, then transport them to Wildlife Center of Silicon Valley for a health exam. From there, biologists with the Department of Fish and Wildlife will have final say as to where they are relocated.
However, not everyone is in agreement with moving the turkeys. As Duane and Rebecca were evaluating their condition, they were approached by a neighbor who expressed concern for the birds, but was opposed to the idea of them being removed.

Stay tuned!

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