Turkey researchers working hard to build a better bird


Eastern wild turkeys have that classic turkey look, but domesticated turkeys are generally bred with breasts so big that they can’t mate naturally.

A majority of today’s domesticated turkeys may not be able to fly, but their ancestors sure got around. Meleagris gallopavo, the quintessential New World bird, was already an Old World favorite by the time colonists in North America first celebrated any Thanksgiving feasts. Today’s turkey researchers are investigating the big bird’s genetic heritage and biology as part of an effort to improve several aspects of its cultivation.


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