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turkey-blog-tile-app
November 22, 2015

Find that Turkey ( & 21 Eggs )

Tile can be used to find anything. This customer has been using Tile to track where their Turkey's lay eggs over their 40 acres! Thats pretty amazing. So it's official. Tile has helped people find dogs, cats, turtles, goats, and now... Turkeys! They were able to use last place seen & the proximity feature to find out where they were nesting over the course of a day. Since they have tall grass, it would have been impossible to find them otherwise. Full story below.

"We were fairly early backers of Tile, waiting about a year after we ordered for the product to be rolled out. We were very excited to finally get them! At first we just used them on normal things - iPads, laptops, etc. My husband had had a work laptop stolen once and I lost an iPad on a plane. That was before Tile.

We have a small pasture-based farm that includes my Sweetgrass flock of turkeys, a few alpacas, few Icelandic sheep, lots of chickens and a few rabbits (well, the rabbit numbers fluctuate widely since they breed like, you know, rabbits!). Normally we keep all our birds out on the pastures 24/7 during the growing season with mobile shade shelters for roosting in at night.

My Sweetgrass turkeys excel on pasture, gleaning insects and eating tons of grass in addition to the organic grain we give them. This year owls have been decimating my flock at night, forcing me to lock them in the poultry barn at night. I didn't want to contain them to the same small paddock by the barn all summer so I decided to let them free-range during the day.

Although we have a square 40 acres, the flock stays within about a 2-acre radius of the barn during the day. The problem is the hens won't use the nest boxes in the barn, preferring instead to find a thicket of grass or thistles to lay their eggs in.

Also, each hen lays in a separate nest (we have 4 hens). Which means we often had no idea where they were laying their eggs. We tried going outside and following them around every 30-60mn, but a watched hen never lays!

That's when it finally occurred to me to try using the Tiles. The hens already wear breeding saddles for protection against the tom's claws, so it was easy to tie on a Tile to each hen apron.

We started finding their nests soon after we implemented this system. Even if the hen moves her nesting location, which can happen often, we can still locate her. Last week we were in the BWCA and my farm-sitter said their nests were empty and he feared a raccoon was finding and eating the eggs.

But this week I found them all again - 21 eggs! They had just moved their nests while we were away.

If a hen lays a whole bunch of eggs without anyone removing them from the nest, she will "go broody," sitting on the nest until they hatch. This would be dangerous for our hens, to stay outside of the safe barn at night, as they would likely get eaten by a raccoon. So it is very important that we locate these nests in a timely fashion and keep the eggs from piling up. "

Cheers
Victoria
, WI


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