Look at these little darlings
It's a very hot day here in Massachusetts, but Mama hen and her babies are doing just fine. This tree-filled acre is shady and cool in places with tall grasses for wild turkeys to rest in. I provide plenty of fresh water and the thistle that falls down from the feeders is a good food source for the poults, even though their diet is primarily protein (insect) based. Tom Senior, most likely their Dad, has been by and I expect the hen and poults again late this afternoon. These photos were taken early this morning. Click on them for the best views.
The four surviving poults have learned a great deal in the weeks since hatching. They know to stay very close together now and at times appear like a little traveling ball of poults. And they are fast! In the top photo you can see the poult on the far left getting ready turn and head north. Speed certainly helps them avoid predators at this very vulnerable time and just look at how well camouflaged they are with their spotted heads and mottled feathers. Each has a distinct personality and all know me as someone they now trust.
As the poults enter their awkward stage (think Pekin Duck), it's wonderful to see them thriving. They have begun their second season of life ― Summer!