Pied / Cröllwitzer

Pied turkey

Key Characteristics

This particular turkey is a stunning exhibition bird and very popular on the show bench. This small, light turkey has never been purposefully selected for either growth rate or muscling but can be useful on smallholdings as an egg producer and for pest control as, like other varieties of turkey, they are keen insect foragers.

History

  • The Pied, Crollwitzer or Black-laced White turkey of Europe dates back to the 1700s.  

Appearance

  • It is very alert, upright and exceptionally ornamental
  • The plumage of both sexes is similar with black, white and black and white feathers giving the distinct pied colouring.  
  • The eyes are light brown, the beak light horn and the legs and feet pink which darkens with age.
  • Mature males can weigh up to 10kgs (22lbs) and mature females 5.4kgs (12lbs).
  • Day-old poults are a yellowish white throughout the body. Through the down pure white feathers grow and the familiar black markings begin to appear at around 6-8 weeks.

Uses

Meat

Although the breed produces a smaller carcass than others, it is an excellent choice for a smallholder, being a great forager. 

Did you know?

There are similar variations of the black and white turkeys. It is possible to see both the Ronquire from Belgium and the American Royal Palm in the UK but here these varieties are very few in number.

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