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Flight Pattern

Eastern wild turkeys are much more agile than their overstuffed domestic cousins

  • Earl Reinink
  • Sep 15, 2011

EASTERN WILD TURKEYS such as these birds in Ontario, Canada, are much more agile than their overstuffed domestic cousins. While most heavy birds must go through some ungainly running and wing flapping to overcome gravity, wild turkeys are capable of instant takeoff—an impressive feat for North America's largest game bird. Their wings are specially adapted for rapid acceleration, and once in the air, they can achieve speeds exceeding 50 mph. Their bodies are not built for endurance, however. Most turkey flights are limited to short distances.

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