This may seem like a joke, but it can be a real problem. Wild turkeys are abundant in this area and in neighboring towns flocks numbering as many as 25 have been reported. Adult males can grow quite large, up to four feet tall and weigh 20 pounds or more. When fully puffed out, they can be quite impressive and intimidating. All turkeys, especially the males, have long spurs on the backs of their legs that they use for protection. Turkeys can become quite aggressive in the spring, but people have reported aggressive and threatening turkey behavior at other times of the year, when there were no nests or chicks to protect.

To avoid unhappy turkey encounters, you should not leave any bird seed, pet food crumbs, or other types of food outdoors. Never feed turkeys directly. Turkeys generally retreat when given a shove, but you might want to do that with a broom or other item that will get your point across without injuring the bird. If that doesn’t work, call DEP’s wildlife division at 845-256-3098.