Later this month, we'll be sitting down with family and friends to enjoy a turkey dinner on Thanksgiving. The tradition began with the first settlers whose tables were graced by wild turkeys. You may see wild turkeys around Michigan, but, at one time, they were wiped out because of unregulated hunting and the destruction of their habitat.
Al Stewart, wildlife biologist with the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, joined Tati Amare to discuss the comeback of wild turkeys in the state. Wild turkeys are not the same as the turkeys people buy in the grocery store, those domestic turkeys are the descendants of their wild counterparts. Michigan used to have a large wild turkey population, but settlers, needing nourishment, ate them, rendering them extinct in Michigan by the early 1900s.
Now thanks to conservationists and hunters coming together to help re-build the wild turkey population in the state, Michigan now has over 200,000 wild turkeys.
To learn more about the growing wild turkey population in Michigan, visit this website.
You can also see the great work the Michigan Wildlife Council is doing by going to their website hereformioutdoors.org.