Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Everything is Coming Up Turkeys

It's nearly Thanksgiving and all is growing quiet in Cambridge. On the way into work I didn't have to dodge the regular tableau of people standing in the middle of Central Square talking on their cell phones and bicyclists failing to obey the rules of the road.

Sadly, my favorite neighborhood turkeys were no where to be found. Maggie the therapy dog and I have been on the look out for said avian creatures since first spotting them. In honor of the Thanksgiving holiday we packed a small bag of bird seed today and were going to feed them.

They've gone missing: I hope a Cantabrigian did not lay eyes on them and decide they were a holiday dinner.

Who are these turkeys? Information is sparse. I have heard from reliable sources on Twitter that these plump creatures live in the Riverside area of Cambridge. I showed a line up of photos to some residents. They were positively identified as part of a rafter of turkeys who live at an undisclosed Riverside location under a blue kayak.

I won't disclose more. If they haven't found their way to a dinner table I'd like to make sure they remain free to wander about town. They are, I think, the only creatures who wander around with constant use of smart phones.

It being almost Thanksgiving, you might be interested in some turkey trivia. Turkeys belong to the genus Meleagris. The wild turkeys we generally see, including our local rafter of birds living in Cambridge, are Meleagris gallopavo. Fossil records (and please, readers, tell me you believe in fossil records) indicate that this critters have been pecking around North America since the early miocene period.

That's a long time.

If you didn't already know (and really, this is important stuff, why don't you know this?), the wattle is the fleshy blob hanging from the top of the beak. Males are called toms (or gobblers) and females are called hens.

I'm unsure if the birds pictured here are gobblers or hens. I figured it was rude to look.

So there you have it. Your obligatory pre-Thanksgiving turkey post. If you see this rafter of turkeys please don't eat them. Let them know I have some bird seed from them.

Further, if you spot them, please capture a picture. I'd like to know their whereabouts. Maggie the therapy dog is offering a reward: unlimited therapeutic dog kisses.

1 comment: