They may not be recognisable from the shrink-wrapped fowl that you can pick up at the supermarket for your Christmas dinner but these awkward-looking animals are actually turkeys. Bronze turkeys, to be precise, and they came to live down the bottom of my garden a month ago. They are not pets: they are dinner and, especially when they’re misbehaving, I’m already dreaming about a golden roasted turkey, complete with all the trimmings, quietly steaming away on the Christmas table.
But they’ll have to survive that long first and I have to say that without selfless human intervention these turkeys are just not intelligent enough to manage on their own. So all the feeding and watering and cleaning and herding is done with one (maybe not so altruistic) aim in mind: keeping them alive and growing so that there’s plenty of meat on those odd legs to pick over on Christmas day.
Watch out in the Irish Examiner today for a piece I wrote on raising turkeys for Christmas and, if you should so get the notion yourself, I sourced my pair from the very helpful David Kelly (087 7822232) who is based near Newmarket in North Cork. Also, I have to thank Margaret at Old Farm (A Year In Redwood) for talking to me about the bronze turkeys that she raised last year and being so encouraging about my turkey ambitions!