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Friday, November 15, 2019

A Scientific Look at How Female Turkeys Choose Their Mates (and get rid of the rejects). Plus, artificial insemination.

By the way, although this may be what happens in the wild, in real life the turkey industry is built on artificial insemination. The modern turkey has such large breasts that they physically gets in the way when the male and female try to mate.
...the turkey industry is built around artificial insemination, which is a very labor-intensive and hands-on process. Here’s the way it works: A team of workers has to pick up each male breeder, the tom, which might weigh as much as 70 pounds, secure his contribution — as they call it in the trade — and then bring that to the hen house to inseminate each hen. And then keep in mind — with such an intense consumer demand for turkey — this is not a once-a-year event. 
Per Dr. Richard Buchholz:
With its fanned plumage and bold strut, a male wild turkey’s display conjures images of Americana and festive feasts. But this grandstanding isn’t intended for human eyes – it’s for female turkeys who actually use it to discern a male’s genetic prowess.

This female has figured out how to get rid of a male - just make him dizzy until he falls over: