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Turkey Tuesday: Moving Day

When the turkeys are 5 or 6 weeks old, and about 8 pounds each, we move them from the brooder house to the finishers.  The brooder house has equipment (feeders and waterers) that are made for baby turkeys (poults.)  The finishers have different feeders and waterers to accomodate the birds as they get older.  They also get more room to grow in the finishers:  the brooder is 360 x 60ft. and the finishers are each 528 x 60ft and the flock is split between TWO finishers.

How do you move 20,000 turkeys 1/4 mile down the road?

Like this:



These pictures were from a different moving day.  This time, I was working, so I didn’t get to take any pics.


The entire process takes about 6 people and  8-10 hours.   One person drives the truck, one stays at the finishers to move the freshly delivered turkeys to the end of the building, and three or four wave feed sacks at the turkeys to herd them towards the poult trailer.  I think we should train a dog to herd them, instead.

We set up this “funnel” to herd the turkeys on to the trailer. The trailer has a conveyor belt, and one person gets to stand next to it and press the button to move the belt as the others “shoo” the turkeys onto the cart.  Moving the belt is my favorite job.

This cart holds about 800 birds.  In the winter, it is covered with a tarp to keep them warm while they are moving.  Even though we moved birds on bitterly cold days this time around, they were still nice and warm on the cart!



Enjoy your new home, turkeys! 

Would you like to comment?

  1. Great post. Love the pics! hope you are safe and warm today.

  2. Ok Question:
    Are turkey's a bit more resistent then chickens, because i remember my dad raising chickens on our farm in Holland and they would drop dead if they came under a lot of stress? So we tried to keep them as confortable as possible (right temp, right moisture, right food) and not to many changes. With a big change like this, they don't mind???

    Thanks great post!


  3. I love Turkey Tuesday - I know nothing about turkeys and this is interesting!
    Q:Do turkey barns hold the odor in like hog barns do?