As I am writing this, I am resisting the urge to squeal, “oh my god, tiny turkeys!” and I am sure as you browse through these photos you will too.

While the little faces of these 24 turkey poults look content now, it is clear that their life before their delivery to Farm Sanctuary was not quite as “aw” worthy.

Earlier this week, 24 poults arrived on the doorstep of Farm Sanctuary’s New York Shelter. Dropped off anonymously, the baby birds were sick, dirty, and in desperate need of care.

While the kind person who left the turkeys had brought them to the right place, the sad reality of the poult’s previous life was quickly made apparent.


The poults had all been de-beaked, a practice used on factory farms to keep birds from pulling out their feathers and pecking one another – actions that come with the stress of being locked in a cage the size of an ipad with 10 other birds.

The life of a factory farmed turkey (and every other animal) is miserable and short. These baby turkeys would have been brought to slaughter after 20 weeks, when their bodies had reached market weight after being pumped with corn feed and a whole host of nasty chemicals to promote growth.


If left to live on the factory farm from whence they came, these poults would have surely been left for dead. Many of them had upper respiratory and joint infections and were too weak to stand up. On the factory farm, they would have NEVER been given individualized care, but probably mass-fed antibiotics or simply left to die.

Now in the good hands of the Farm Sanctuary staff, the turkeys are being cared for and treated for their ailments by the Melrose Small Animal Hospital.


Once they recover, these 24 little poults have a full life of happiness to look forward to at Farm Sanctuary, enjoying the freedom to roam, make friends, and have all the love and compassion that they deserve.


All images source: Farm Sanctuary