Official SUNY ESF DLA Off-Campus Blog

sub[urban] wildlife by esfdla
November 1, 2010, 10:11 am
Filed under: Martha's Vineyard 2010


Over the past few years, turkeys have made their home in several up-island neighborhoods on the island.  Traveling in flocks, the large bird’s most common crime is helping themselves to bird feeders and leaving their scat in yards.  However in 2009, things took a terrible turn, as a flock of turkeys began wreaking havoc terrorizing the community.  Residents gave up gardening and started parking within an arm’s reach of their front doors as turkeys began to launch themselves at people, peck out windows, and topple down chimneys.  After an investigation, it was determined habitat loss, lack of predators, and humans feeding the turkeys caused them to act territorial, contributing to their bizarre behavior.  Under federal protection, there are two short hunting seasons for turkey on the island.   While the turkeys continue to roam the community, residents are educated about the dangers of leaving food out for them.  In case of future attack, reaching for the garden hose is an effective measure.

Until next time,



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