Here are some interesting facts related to the Turkey, the National Bird of America. This Turkey trivia is meant for fun reading.
The auspicious festival of Thanksgiving is one of the six major holidays observed in America annually. Celebrated on the fourth Thursday of November every year, Thanksgiving Day is commemorated to express your sincere thankfulness and gratitude towards the Lord for abundant harvest and everything that he has bestowed upon mankind. Being a extravagant and luxuriant festival, it is celebrated across the nation with immense magnificence and grandeur. The festivities boast of lavish turkey meals, other traditional delicacies, colorful parades, unlimited music and dance, holidaying, and watching games of football and other sports. Turkey is one of the icons associated with Thanksgiving. Gobble some interesting facts about the turkey that you may pass on to your family and friends on Thanksgiving Day. Read on.
- There are many reasons given being the name ‘Turkey’ for the particular bird. While some relate it with the sound of ‘turk, turk...’ that it produces, others trace it back to the Native American version of the name of the bird, ‘Firkee’. Some others connect the origin of the word to Christopher Columbus, who mistook America for India and ‘turkey’ for a type of peacock. Thus, he tried to name the word based on the Tamil translation of peacock, which he knew was ‘Tuka’. Though it was discovered later that the bird actually belonged to the pheasant family, people kept using the name for the bird.
- There was some conflict over ‘turkey’ and ‘bald eagle’ for being declared as the national bird of America. Benjamin Franklin voted out ‘bald eagle’ for being cowardly.
- People prefer the meat of older male turkeys as they find younger tom turkeys to be too stringy, while for female turkeys, they prefer younger female turkeys as older female ones have tougher meat.
- People do name turkeys according to their age - Turkeys less than sixteen weeks old are called ‘fryers’ while those between five to seven months of age are called ‘young roasters’.
- Turkey is the only native poultry breed of the Western Hemisphere.
- Turkeys have great hearing skills but no ears.
- Turkeys can see in colors, have excellent visual acuity, and their field of vision spans across about 270 degrees.
- Turkeys have poor sense of smell but great sense of taste.
- Wild turkeys can fly at a speed of as much as 55 miles per hour over short distances and are good runners with a speed of about 25 miles per hour.
- Turkeys are so sensitive that they can drown by looking up while it is raining and can have heart attacks due to sudden shocks.
- The average weight of a turkey purchased on Thanksgiving is 15 pounds.
- While 45 million turkeys are eaten on Thanksgiving, the amount reduces to 22 million on Christmas and 19 million on Easter.
- Next time on Thanksgiving Day, try the ballroom dance known as the ‘Turkey Trot’, which is based on the short, jerky steps of the turkeys.