Did you just drive by a passel…a group…a waddle…a gobble…a flock…of turkeys? Wait…what? What IS a group of turkeys called? Let’s find out!
What is a Group of Turkeys Called?
Interestingly enough, a group of turkeys is called a rafter. A rafter? Yup! That’s it!
How Many Turkeys are in a Rafter?
But what does it take to make a real bonafide rafter? How many turkeys do you have to count to shout out, “Hey guys! it’s a rafter of turkeys!” When you see a group or rafter of turkeys, there will be two or more found together. And yes, by all means, shout it out!
Read more here: #1 Comprehensive Guide to Turkeys
Why Is a Group of Turkeys Called a Rafter?
But why, oh why, are they called rafters? What’s the history behind the name?
When I first learned that a group of turkeys are called rafters, my first thought was dinosaurs. Was it because they looked like a raptor? It didn’t quite make sense. But then it did make sense when I thought about it in terms of this explanation:
When buildings were being constructed, people would find turkeys in the rafters of their barns and structures. It really is a great place to roost: it’s out of the weather, it’s high up and out of the site and reach of predators. What better place to sleep at night, than in the rafters?
So, because of this, a group of turkeys is known as rafters.
Where do Turkeys Sleep?
Turkeys can be found in the rafters if they are available. But wild turkeys will most likely be found roosting in the trees at night. As the sun sets, they will fly up into the trees for protection and then fly down as the sun comes up. During the daytime, they can be found on the ground, scratching and foraging for food.
Top 5 Fun Facts About Turkeys
- Turkeys see in color and have very good daytime vision.
- A turkey’s gobble can be heard a mile away! This is how the Tom, or male turkey, communicates with the rafter.
- A turkey doesn’t have feathers on their head but the Tom does have fleshy wattles covering their face. In excitement, their entire head, wattles, and snood can turn several different colors based on their mood. It can turn blue, white, pink, and very red!
- Within 24 hours of hatching, baby turkeys, or poults, are on the go with the hen. They dry off, fluff up and leave the nest and are out foraging very quickly.
- June is National Turkey Lover’s Month, on average people eat 18 pounds of turkey a year and more turkeys are consumed on Thanksgiving than with both Christmas and Easter combined.
So, get ready! Look out your car window and get ready to shout, “Rafter! It’s a rafter!” And as the weird looks start, you can explain why a group of turkeys is called a rafter.