Turkey Beard…

Tom Turkey, Laudholm Farms, Wells Maine

I don’t know how I managed it, but I lived 70 years on planet Earth without noticing the beard on a Tom turkey. After seeing it my recent photos of a rafter (group) of Toms at Laudholm Farms in nearby Wells Maine, I had to Google it to make sure it was a real thing. It is. All Toms (and small percentage of hens) grow chest beards…modified feathers similar in texture to a horse’s tail…from their chests. Some say you can tell the age of a Tom by the length of its beard, and that they reach 8-10 inches, so this Tom is indeed a mature male. (Hens’ beards, when they have them, are always shorter, a few inches at most.) One more strange thing about this very strange bird. Sony RX10iv at 600mm. Program mode. 1/500th @ f4 @ ISO 250. Processed in Polarr.

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