Q:

How can you tell the difference between a female and male turkey?

A:

Quick Answer

The easiest way to tell male and female turkeys apart is by looking at their feathers. Female turkeys (hens) have brown or gray feathers, while male turkeys (gobblers) have brightly colored feathers. If one can only see the head of a turkey, they should see a nearly featherless head on the male and a slightly feathered head on the female.

Know More
How can you tell the difference between a female and male turkey?
Credit: Hey Paul Flickr CC-BY-2.0

Full Answer

The appearance of a female turkey is based on this bird's need to be camouflaged. Their drably colored feathers make it easy for them to hide while nesting. Males, in contrast, have red, green, and gold feathers so that they can be noticed by the females for mating.

Both female and male turkeys have tails that are 12 to 15 inches long, but only male turkeys fan their tails. They also do this while trying to attract a mate. Both sexes have reddish-orange legs and feet, but male turkeys have spurs near the base of their legs. Used to establish their dominance, spurs can be up to 2 inches long.

If one sees a beard on a turkey, it indicates that the turkey is probably a male — about 10 to 20 percent of female turkeys also grow beards. Regardless of whether the turkey is male or female, the beard can be up to 18 inches long with an average length of nine inches.


Is this answer helpful?

Similar Questions

  • Q:

    What is a male turkey called?

    A:

    A male turkey is called either a tom or a gobbler. Juvenile male turkeys are called jakes until they reach adulthood. Turkeys are the largest game bird that is found in North America.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    How long is a male turkey?

    A:

    The average adult male wild turkey is between 42 and 45 inches long from beak to tail tip. Domestic breeds of the species differ in size, but the smallest breeds are approximately the same size as turkeys in the wild.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    How do you tell difference between female and male guinea pigs?

    A:

    The easiest way to tell the difference between male and female guinea pigs is by measuring the distance between the guinea pig's anus and its genitals. According to Pet Informed, a male guinea pig's genital area measures further from the anus than a female guinea pig's genital area.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    How do you tell if your chicken is a rooster?

    A:

    The easiest way to tell if a chicken is a rooster is to see if it lays eggs or crows; if it crows, it is a rooster, and if it lays eggs, it is a hen. If the chicken is too young to lay eggs, additional clues, such as the color of its comb, can help determine the gender.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:

Explore