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January 18, 2009

Central Park's Suspicious Wild Turkey Removal

All images above photographed on Sunday January 18, 2009.

January 16, 2009
Hi Lincoln,

I just heard that the turkey was removed from the park and will now be relocated to Pelham Bay Park. We were chatting about this after Christmas when Dan Weaver was talking about it at the feeders. I really liked seeing it around and, as you said, it was doing fine where it was. Such a shame - I'm bummed about this.

Just thought I'd pass along my 2 cents.


Hi Lincoln,

Here is info from Regina Alvarez about the turkey - she sent this to a few folks this past week (Tuesday?) or so):

Hello All -

The turkey that has been living in CP for the past several months was apparently captured the other day by a member of the public who believed it would starve to death or freeze. The turkey was taken by this unknown person to Animal Care and Control, who in turn brought the turkey to a wildlife rehabilitator in Brooklyn.

The Rangers were all set to bring the turkey back to Central Park, but the DEC (Department of Environmental Conservation) has ordered the wildlife rehabilitator to reintroduce the bird to Pelham Bay Park, where there is already a flock of turkeys. The other option she was given was to euthanize the bird. She must comply with DEC or she risks losing her license.

The Rangers will work with her to release the bird in Pelham.

As always, if anyone has any questions, please feel free to call or email me.


Regina V. Alvarez
Director of Horticulture and Woodland Management
Central Park Conservancy
14 East 60th Street
New York City, NY 10022

Note from me:

The turkey was in perfect health and was able to fly and perch high in trees. I would like to know who this 'member of the public' was and what right they gave themselves to handle a healthy wild animal.
I called the Urban Park Rangers last week when I heard about this and was told by a very senior person that they were not informed about this and was not involved in the removal of this turkey.

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