Local Turkeys Gone Rogue

Imagine after a long day at school or work trying to leave the parking lot, and a group of turkeys block your path. You may think that they are harmless birds, but in reality they are ready to defend their territory and attack.


Jessica Schlieper, PHS PaperClip Staff/Writer

Recently around the Portsmouth High School area, wild turkeys are creating quite a stir. A lot of people are sharing their experiences with the turkeys, and it is not very positive.

Liz Hart, a PHS culinary student said, “I’m terrified of the turkeys. I try to go to my car and once one sees me it makes a noise and the rest come running at me and everyone else trying to leave.”

There are very real dangers to beware of when dealing with these animals. When they feel threatened, their instinct is to peck and claw at their victim, including going for the neck. They are also a threat to drivers on the road. The flock of turkeys can create a distraction, or people try to avoid hitting them and end up getting in an accident. They can run 25 mph and reach a flight speed of 55 mph.

There have been multiple articles written about a Cape Cod mailman who has been forced to carry a stick around whenever on the job to defend himself from these aggressive birds.

Portsmouth resident Dana Clark, had a lot of concerns to express about the turkeys. “They are like guard dogs, I can’t even open the door for my daughter to go to work. I have never seen a turkey until coming to this state and they are everywhere and always put up a fight.” 

The best advice is to keep a safe distance and do not invade on their territory or pose a threat.