What a delight! On a routine trip to town I turned a corner and there by the side of the road were three wild turkeys looking much like those in the picture below. If I had had my camera I would have had time to take my own picture.
This may not be so unusual to those who live south of me but it is a rare and novel sighting here.
There are wild turkeys in Southern Ontario as a result of a 25 year old (since 1984) reintroduction program.
In 1909, Wild Turkeys were over hunted to extinction in Ontario. The reintroduction program has been a big success, so much so their is a hunting season in which 10,000 birds are taken. The estimates are there are as many as 100,000 birds in Ontario now.
A little while ago their was a effort in introduce the birds into North Ontario. The St. Charles Area, about 40 miles from here was were it began. Also over toward Sault Ste Marie on St. Joseph Island there are some Wild Turkeys as the result of a reintroduction program there, I assume. Until this year Turkeys had not show up around here.
In the Spring, I had a neighbour about five miles away tell me he had a couple of Wild Turkeys show up around his place. I had my doubts, until now.
It will be nice if they establish themselves in this area. I am not sure how far north they my extend their range and still survive the winter. They will join the White Tailed Deer and Sandhill Cranes that have migrated into this area in significant numbers in the last couple of decades.
With any luck, the recent effort to reintroduce Elk in the area, we may see them some day also.
Years ago, there were lots of deer here, north of Lake Nipissing, but until relatively recently their were none. This is moose country and I was told they didn't like to share the range with moose. This, of course, was not true as they have moose in the deer area also. The big over wintering deer yard is south of Lake Nipissing. But now deer around here are seen regularly. Yesterday, while walking the dog I watch one swim across the river. Nature is full of such little delights!