Whilst our American cousins celebrate Thanksgiving today, Bernard the Tilgate turkey is feeling very relieved he lives in the UK!
Bernard has been here at Tilgate for many years now and is a familiar face for all our visitors. He might look odd, but Bernard and his fellow turkeys are rather impressive animals. Check out some fun turkey facts below!
1) Male turkeys are called gobblers. Females are called hens. Hens can’t make the famous ‘gobble gobble’ sound.
2) Turkeys are related to a group of dinosaurs that includes the T-Rex & velociraptor!
3) Depending on its mood, the skin on a turkey’s head & neck can change from pink to grey, red, white or blue!
4) The strange tassel on a turkey’s chest is called a beard. Some gobblers have been known to sport as many as 8 beards!
5) Turkeys were very important in Mayan civilisation. They were revered and used only for special feasts and sacrifices.
6) A turkey leg is known as a ‘drumstick’ because in the mid-1800’s it was considered scandalous to mention anything to do with legs at the dinner table. ‘White meat’ and ‘dark meat’ were also adopted to prevent embarrassment from saying ‘breast’ or ‘leg’.
7) Wild turkeys can fly short distances at up to 50mph, run at 12mph, and are very good swimmers.
Turkeys are truly terrific! We might not celebrate ‘Turkey Day’ here in Britain, but perhaps you can share these facts with your friends and family when you’re enjoying a turkey dinner at Christmas instead…just don’t tell Bernard!!