Fun turkey facts for Christmas

Turkey trivia for the curious at heart
calendar icon 24 December 2021
clock icon 3 minute read

Here’s a list of turkey facts, courtesy of Southern Farm Network.

  • Ben Franklin, in a letter to his daughter, proposed the turkey as the official United States bird
  • The average American eats 16 pounds of turkey
  • 46 million turkeys are eaten each Thanksgiving, 22 million on Christmas and 19 million turkeys on Easter
  • The average weight of a turkey purchased at Thanksgiving is 15 pounds
  • The heaviest turkey ever raised was 86 pounds, about the size of a large dog
  • A 15-pound turkey usually has about 70% white meat and 30% dark meat
  • The male turkey is called a tom
  • Tom turkeys have beards
  • The female turkey is called a hen
  • The turkey was domesticated in Mexico and brought to Europe in the 16th century
  • Turkeys lived almost ten million years ago
  • In 1920, US turkey growers produced one turkey for every 29 persons in the US today
  • Growers produce nearly one turkey for every person in the country
  • Male turkeys gobble. Hens do not. They make a clicking noise.
  • Wild turkeys can fly for short distances up to 55 mph and can run 20 mph.
  • Turkeys are believed to have been brought to Britain in 1526 by Yorkshire man William Strickland. He acquired six turkeys from American Indian traders and sold them for a tuppence in Bristol.
  • Henry VIII was the first English King to enjoy turkey and Edward VII made turkey eating fashionable at Christmas
  • The five most popular ways to serve leftover turkey are in a sandwich, stew, chili or soup, casseroles, and as a burger
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