Tuesday, May 8, 2007
Caution! Wild Turkey Crossing—On Every Major Roadway in MN!
Minnesotans have long been aware to keep an eye out on roads for wildlife hazards. Most state residents have had at least one family member encounter a white-tailed deer either head on or as a near miss. We learn as soon as we hit the road at 16 years old with the ink wet on our licenses, to keep an eye out for those 4-legged hazards that jump out of the ditch and can total a car with a direct hit.
But have you ever encountered a wild turkey? Although the wild turkey had nearly disappeared from Minnesota at the turn of the century, these birds have made a comeback as of late. It is estimated their population is over 30,000 according to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.
Living in Anoka County I know this first hand. As a Ham Lake resident with a couple of acres, our wooded area has been home to a flock of wild turkeys for the past year. The eighteen birds are beautiful but we have a sort of love/hate relationship. You see, I know first hand how stupid these beautiful birds are.
OK. What would prompt such a statement? A few years back as I traveled with my boys home from a birthday party down Lexington Avenue, I had an encounter with a wild turkey. Or rather my windshield did. We were just coming up on one of the S-curves with almost no shoulder and a deep ditch. This is a two-lane, 55 mph road edged with tall grass. Another car was approaching us in the other lane when all of the saddened this stupid bird darted out onto the road. As the other car approached, the wild turkey attempted flight and was able to get just high enough to hit my windshield square in the middle and bounced off the top into the ditch.
We were lucky. Our new van only lost a windshield…The dumb turkey lost its life. And NO, we did not take it home with us to eat it!
It could have been much worse. A week later we saw on the news a woman who hit a wild turkey going 70 mph on the interstate. The bird went through the windshield and ended up in a pile of blood and feathers in the lady’s back seat.
As a Realtor, I am driving all over the countryside from Blaine to Chisago. And from North Branch to White Bear Lake. The wild turkey population is thriving in Anoka, Chisago and Washington Counties. If you travel through this area and see wild turkeys near the road, try to give them room as they cannot fly as high or as quickly as a pheasant. If I see them near the side of the road, I proceed with caution. I hope to never have hit a 30 pound dead weight with my car again!
If you are relocating to Minnesota, are looking for Homes for Sale in the north and east Twin Cities metro area and need help from a professional Realtor, give me a call or visit my website for a FREE Relocation Packet. I specialize in acreage properties! Serving Anoka, Chisago, Ramsey and Washington Counties in Minnesota.