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Friday, December 19, 2008

The Gregarious Gobblers

Here we are between the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays, and we all know what that means . . . turkey diners with all the trimmings. It seems as I wait for Christmas, the wild turkey population around New Gretna gets more testy and aggressive as they roam from out West Road and up North Maple Avenue to Leektown. It's as if they sense the threat of the season to their survival. As I look out in my yard, I see the birds at their best and at their worst.

They can be entertaining and look beautiful . . .

. . . or they can be annoying and a nuisance, as was the case the last holiday season when my friend, Charles, from Toms River, came for a visit. I was sitting in my living room, anticipating that he would be knocking on the front door shortly, when the phone rang. Upon hearing Charles say hello, I wondered where he was calling from, as he was usually prompt and was now a few minutes late. I asked if he was held up by an accident on the Parkway or some other traffic mishap. "No", he replied, "I'm calling from my cell phone and am right outside in your driveway. There's turkeys here, and they won't let me out of my car. I'm trapped. Help!"

Being from the "big city", Charles had never seen wild turkeys and wasn't about to take any chances, as the noisy birds circled around his car. I went out and chased them away, and we had a good laugh about the situation. Ever since then, I believe Charles gives a little shiver and listens for a gobble every time he pulls into my driveway.

The wild turkeys circled around Charles' car in my driveway.

I've heard that, some time ago, the gregarious gobblers were after Karl Swanseen while he was jogging along North Maple Avenue, causing him to flag down a passing car for refuge. Too bad he doesn't jog with a camera. I would have loved a photo of that!

Anyone else have any stories and/or photos of the wild turkeys around New Gretna? Email them to me, so we can share them on the blog.

Pete S.


  1. So just to set the story straight..... I was indeed accosted by a band of evil turkeys while going for a run up North Maple ave. I came upon them rather quickly and gave them quite a scare, but as I passed running they gave chase. Each time I turned to face them the scoundrels would flee into the woods, but when I resumed running the cowardly bunch would attack from behind with talons flying in fierce karate kick fashion. After about ten minutes of this back and forth jousting... even a handy branch did not deter the pack... a motorist pulled out her drive and I jumped in and moved past the pack out of sight to resume my run. But the story does not end there! Next day while driving past the same spot I observed a young woman hurling fists full of gravel at the same dastardly pack of turkey. Apparently she was out for a walk when accosted. Knowing her plight from my experience the day before I pulled over and offered her a ride out of peril, which she gratefully accepted. My only advice is to stay on the offensive and carry a big stick!!!

    Karl Swanseen

  2. And they say that the street gangs in Phillie are tough.

    Pete S.