Key Characteristics

The breed has a placid nature. Their eggs are cream with brown speckles and the Norfolk Black lays around 70 eggs per year, the season being from February to September. 


  • The Black turkey originated in Europe and is believed to have evolved from American turkeys that had been imported in the early 1500s.
  • It is most likely that it first arrived in Spain from where it was eventually taken to England.
  • Farmers in East Anglia, most notably the county of Norfolk, were very interested in keeping these domesticated birds for their fine meat and that is how the Norfolk Black turkey came to have its name. 


  • The body of the Norfolk Black is fairly long and deep and it is particularly broad across the shoulders.
  • It should be a dense matt black throughout with no other colouration in the plumage.
  • The legs, feet and toenails should be black but the legs and feet change to pink with age.  
  • A mature Norfolk Black male weighs up to 11.35kgs (25lbs) and a mature female 5.9 – 6.80kgs (13 – 15lbs).


  • Meat - Norfolk Blacks take about six months to mature to slaughter and are renowned for the quality of their meat.

Did you know?

Although most commercially bred turkeys are the modern broad-breasted birds, there are a number of farmers who raise Norfolk Blacks for meat. They are well known for the quality and flavour of the meat.