Traveling Ted is a blog that takes readers along on my adventures hiking, canoeing, skiing, and international backpacking. Many blogs focus on one aspect of backpacking, but I tackle both the outdoor adventure side and international exploration as well.

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Brooklyn State Wildlife Area

Shire like view at the Brooklyn State Wildlife Area

The year of the wild turkey

This year has seemed to be the year of the wild turkey for me. I have been lucky enough to literally see hundreds this year. It started out on a section of the Ice Age Trail in Wisconsin. In early April I was enjoying a Shire like view on a bench when a gaggle of turkeys surreptitiously emerged from the brush.

Wild turkeys Wisconsin

Happy Thanksgiving – Wild turkeys coming out of the brush in formation at Brooklyn State Wildlife Area in southern Wisconsin

Happy Thanksgiving and the comeback of the wild turkey

Turkeys are making a comeback in the same fashion as bald eagles. I have been fishing, camping, hiking, canoeing the Midwest for over 30 years, and I don’t think I saw my first wild turkey until I was a senior in high school. We were driving to Big Bend National Park, and I saw two out the car window. It has not been until the last five or six years that I have started to see them with regularity.

Wisconsin wild turkeys

Turkeys in a farmer’s field in Wisconsin – Happy Thanksgiving

This year I have seen them nearly everywhere I go. I saw them on that day hiking the Ice Age Trail, I saw bunches of them fishing for walleye in Nekoosa, I saw several at Sleeping Bear Dunes, I saw several while canoeing Wisconsin, and I even saw several gaggles last weekend in Illinois.

Wisconsin wild turkeys farm field

Gaggle of turkeys in a farmer’s field in central Wisconsin

Sleeping Bear Dunes wild turkey

Wild turkey at the edge of the woods at Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore

I have heard they have made a tremendous comeback in Illinois, but I don’t think I have ever seen one in the Prairie State. That changed last weekend at Rock Cut State Park. There were over 20 searching for food in the morning in the campground.

Rock Cut State Park wild turkeys

Wild turkeys at Rock Cut State Park in northern Illinois

Wild turkeys Illinois Rock Cut State Park

gobble, gobble, gobble

Wild turkey Illinois

Rock Cut State Park wild turkey walks like an Egyptian

Wild turkey Illinois

A nice plump turkey grazing for food in an Illinois campground

Enjoy this little photo essay of Benjamin Franklin’s favorite bird. Have a great Happy Thanksgiving holiday, enjoy time with your family, and be thankful of the comeback of the wild turkey.

Wild turkeys Black Hills South Dakota

A few pictures of past turkeys: This gaggle taken from the outskirts of Rapid City, South Dakota

Wild turkeys Great Smoky Mountains

A couple of wild turkeys in the Great Smoky Mountains in Tennessee

Adventure On!

The goal of Traveling Ted is to inspire people to outdoor adventure travel and then provide tips on where and how to go. If you liked this post then enter your email in the box to get email notifications for each new entry. Daily travel photos are excluded from your email in order to not flood you with posts. There is no spam and email information will not be shared. Other e-follow options include Facebook (click on the like box to the right) or twitter (click on the pretty bird on the rainbow above).

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