Steve Hickoff is the Realtree Turkey Hunting Editor and Blogger. He’s been beaten by more birds than he can remember. Still he kills enough to eat well, and fool with beards, spurs and fans until the next season. Pennsylvania born and raised, Maine is his home base now. A full-time outdoor communicator with a couple university writing degrees, he chases spring gobblers and fall flocks around the country. It's "all turkeys, all the time" on the Realtree Turkey Blog.
White Wild Turkey Killed in Wisconsin
A Wisconsin man killed a white wild turkey this recent spring hunting season and aims to have the trophy mounted. Wouldn’t you?
How rare is it? As biologist Lovett E. Williams, Jr. says in his book The Art and Science of Wild Turkey Hunting: “The wild turkey experiences plumage color mutations just as domestic turkeys do.” The phase seen in the Wisconsin bird is typically called “smoke gray.” As Williams further explains, “this mutant probably is responsible for most of the reports of white wild turkeys.”
Want some more information on this white wild turkey color phase? James Earl Kennamer, Ph.D. of the National Wild Turkey Federation also weighs in here on wild turkey oddities and white wild turkeys.
And finally, one of our Realtree forum users (paul23) posted this image of a white wild turkey on the site back on May 5, 2010. Yep, I’ve seen a few melanistic phase wild turkeys over the years, including both hens and gobblers (though I've never tagged one during spring or fall turkey seasons).
How about you? Let us know in the comments section below and thanks.