The Mystery of the Great Basin Turkeys


MYSTERY WIRE — Great Basin National Park in Nevada is on a road less traveled by humans. It’s a place where the deer and the antelope play. But also a place where some uninvited guests have made their home.

Wild turkeys now call the Great Basin home. But they are not supposed to be here. In fact, the birds are actually from Texas and Idaho originally and were released outside the park beginning back in the 1960’s. The plan was to make the area outside the park a popular turkey hunting spot.

It seems nobody told the turkeys that was the plan. The birds decided the area outside the park was not for the birds and migrated to the relative safety of inside national park boundaries, where hunting is not allowed.

That’s when the birds began reproducing. Park rangers and guests started to see large numbers of the large, dark colored birds waddling around making strange noises.

It’s not that hard to see the turkeys in the park because there are so many of them. Which also leads to some real problems for rangers and guests. The turkeys not only eat a lot, they get rid of a lot to put it nicely. Leaving a mess wherever they go.

Wild turkeys like the ones at the Great Basin National Park normally have dark feathers, unlike the white feather turkeys seen in most farming operations. But there are reports that an elusive white wild turkey roams the park. It has even been seen in at least one photograph.

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