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General Information

It is also known as white plumage. It is the most important variety among all white feathered birds. It is found in variety of colors like white, black and bronze. It has black color beard, pink to horn colored beak and has pinkish-white color shanks, toes, throat and wattles. This breed has large egg size which is pale cream to medium brown in color with spots on it. The weight of mature toms is 36 pounds and of hens is 20 pounds.


•    Water: They required all time fresh and clean water as its nutritional need. Poultry fountains or automatic watering units are used to keep water clean and to avoid spillage.  In winters water heaters are recommended to avoid to freezing of water.

•    Feeding baby chicks: Chicks need starter mash or crumbles as starting food which is good for their growth and development. The mash includes equal ratio (50:50) of rolled oats and cornmeal. A baby chick requires not more than 28% protein. Supplement the chicks with brewer’s yeast @2cups per 10lb of chick starter.

•    General feeding: Commercial feeds are given to turkeys which contain animal by-products and antibiotics but this feed is harmful for turkeys. So homemade feed is recommended to be given. A beginner turkey requires 22-24% of protein content in their feed, a grower/ finisher turkey i.e. when it reaches 5-8 weeks of age they require 20% protein in the feed and an adult turkey requires 16% protein content in the feed. Try to give the feed in feed container which is heavy and small. Container must be heavy so that tipping doesn’t occur and small so that turkeys will not stand on feed as it will lead to contamination.

Care of the breed

Living requirements: Make garage or shed which is best for turkey farming. A garage must be at least 20-20feet in size so that it will be easy for you to walk comfortably inside the garage. The floor must be covered with mats which are slip-resistant and shelter must be waterproof and well ventilated. The shelter must be thoroughly cleaned once in a week and wet or soiled bedding must be removed daily. To protect turkeys from predators, fencing is done which is 4-5 foot high. Do not use chicken wire alone as fencing as it will break easily.

Care of baby chicks
: For good care of turkeys, they require nutritious and healthy food and plenty of water. Raising baby chicks requires proper attention and an incubator. Eggs are placed in incubator. For the first week the temperature of brooder must be 95oF and it must be dropped by 5oF for every following week. Proper feed at proper interval of time must be given to chicks and clean water must be available every time in the brooder. Handling of chicks should be done carefully while taking out from the incubator. After taking out chicks from the incubator, they are placed in the brooder.

Recommended vaccines: The recommended vaccines given to turkeys at different ages:
•    Vaccination of New Castle disease-B1 strain is given to turkey when it is one day old to prevent them from New Castle disease.
•    Vaccination of Fowl Pox is given when turkey is in 4th and 5th week.
•    Vaccination of New Castle Disease-R2B strain is given when turkey is in 6th week.
•    Cholera vaccine is given when turkey is having age between 8th-10th weeks.

Diseases and Treatment

•    Bumble foot:
This disease mainly occurs due to the presence of scab on the foot.
Treatment: The foot is soaked in Epsom salts then the infected portion is flushed with dilute Bitadine or Chlorhexidine and then rinses it with sterile water.
•    Blackhead:
It is a parasitic disease which is caused by Histomonas Meleagridis. The symptoms are inflammation, diarrhea, dullness and sudden death.
Treatment: Oregano (Viovit) medicine is used widely to treat the blackhead disease.
•    Lameness:
The disease is caused by Mycoplasma infection which can be transmitted though eggs, mating or air. The symptoms are swollen joints, sneezing, dullness etc.
Treatment: Several antibiotics are recommended to cure lameness.
•    Haemorrhagic Enteritis:
It is caused by Adenovirus which mainly affects the young turkeys having 6-12 weeks of age. The disease affects the turkey which causes diarrhoea and ultimately death if left untreated.
Treatment: Several antibiotics are given to treat this disease. The prevention can also be taken by washing the shed with detergent and then apply disinfectant like TAD, CID or interkokask in the dry shed.
•    Respiratory disease:
It is a viral infection which is caused by Mycoplasma and Avian Rhino Tracheitis (ART). The symptoms are sinking and swallowing of face, sneezing, watery eyes, swollen joints etc.
Treatment: It is recovered by birds themselves in mild conditions but when in major condition antibiotic dosage is given.
•    Coccidiosis:
It is a parasitic disease which enters into the turkey’s body and start reproducing. The symptoms are dull feathers, diarrhoea and sudden death.
Treatment: An anticoccidial agent for eg Amprolin or Baycox is used to control the disease.
•    Diarrhoea:
It is caused by many harmful agents such as bacteria, viruses and coccidiosis. The symptoms are weight loss, wet litter, loose droppings etc.
Treatment: Antibiotic therapy is given to treat diarrhoea.
•    Erysipelas:
It is caused by bacteria which lives into soil and enters into turkey’s body through wounds. The symptoms are lameness, sudden death etc.
Treatment: Course of antibiotics is given to cure erysipelas.