Black and white all over


March 17, 2022

Courtesy Sunny Schell

This rare white (or smoky gray) wild hen has been a resident of Pine Haven for a couple of years, says Sunny Schell. About one in 100 wild turkeys are thought to be this color. While not as rare as an albino, these birds are noteworthy. Schell also said that this particular hen had hatched a black poult. If this is, in fact, an entirely black unbarred bird, it is considered extremely rare and is, according to the National Wild Turkey Federation, melanistic: "a rare genetic pigment mutation that makes a wild turkey produce only black feathers, even their wings. Some researchers estimate that...

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