This August, a visitor took up residence outside my cabin: a juvenile wild turkey, looking forlorn and seemingly attracted by its own reflection in the glass door. Over the next two months, the wild turkey grew and grew, curling up against my doorstep during the hot days and occasionally flying and flopping heavily on my not-so-high roof.
Wild turkeys are now found in every state except Alaska, so it’s more and more likely that kids in both rural and urban areas will have spotted these tough, wily, fascinating creatures. With Thanksgiving around the corner, why not spend time learning about one turkey that won’t end up on anyone’s dinner plate!
In Gobble, Gobble, a curious young girl, Jenny, follows arrow-shaped footprints to a flock of funny-looking birds with big strong feet: wild turkeys! Fascinated with these comical and uniquely American birds, she watches them each season for an entire year.
Ideal for learning about animal tracks, the change of seasons, and backyard nature observation, this award-winning book is also the perfect turkey read-aloud for November.
The book has a related Animal Trail Game available online, which has kids identify animal tracks and then scamper like a squirrel or strut like a turkey to the next station. Or you can make a nature journal just like Jenny or collage like the illustrator with scrap paper, bark, or even abandoned wasp nest paper!
My wild turkey eventually vanished, leaving my cabin and companionship behind. It’s likely she has found and joined one of the many nearby flocks of her own kind. I hope to spot her again one day!