Turkeys can be pretty large birds! Does that mean that they can or can’t fly? Let’s find out!
The answer to this question, “Can turkeys fly?” is this: yes and no.
Some turkeys can fly and some can’t. But what is the difference? What makes these birds so different that one may or may not fly? To answer these questions, it’s important to separate the wild turkeys from the domestic ones.
Can Wild Turkeys Fly?
Yes. Wild turkeys can fly.
They forage on the ground, but at night, they will fly to the top of trees to roost. This helps protect them from predators lurking around at night.
Not only will they fly up into trees, but they will also fly away from a scare or predator nipping at their heels. It won’t be for long distances but can be between 40-55 miles an hour.
Can Domestic Turkeys Fly?
Again, this will be a yes and no answer. Domestic turkeys are larger than wild turkeys and that will affect their flight. But the heritage turkey breeds will have a better chance at flying than the commercial broad-breasted white turkey which is the most widely-eaten turkey in America. Not only can this turkey not fly, but it can also struggle to even walk and most are artificially inseminated because they can’t even breed properly because they are so big.
The heritage breeds are bred to retain the wonderful qualities of their wild counterparts, and a part of that is the ability to fly.
How Far Can Turkeys Fly?
Turkeys will fly up into the trees but when they fly cross country it will be low to the ground and no more than about a quarter of a mile.
How High Can a Turkey Fly?
When turkeys fly, it will be low to the ground, and they don’t have much need to fly any higher than flying up to their perch in the top of the trees when they roost at night.
How Fast Can a Turkey Fly?
Turkeys can fly between 40-55 miles an hour, and possibly even up to 60 miles an hour but only for short distances.