Hi everyone, Brenna and Brianna here! On Wednesday, October 26, we had the special honor of visiting schools in the Twin Cities metro area to present two of our special turkeys to elementary students. We talked about how we are raising the turkeys and preparing them for the White House trip. The students saw a neat video that the Minnesota Turkey Growers Association made about the turkey industry, including how birds are hatched, the different barns they live in as they grow and the kind of food they eat.
We also had a veterinarian talk to the elementary students about turkeys and how important it is to raise them in the correct environment for their ages. For instance, baby turkeys (poults) have heaters and really soft, absorbent shavings on the barn floor so that they stay warm and dry while they are growing. We also showed the kids how shiny the water drinkers and feeders are so that the birds will investigate them. Once they find their food and water, they can have as much of both as they want!
We told the students about FFA and what we do in the organization. They were surprised to learn that it’s not just about driving tractors and planting corn! We are learning leadership and speaking skills along with the other projects we do. We encouraged them to get involved in their communities and to explore new things.
The students were very interested to learn from us that day but they were most excited to see the turkeys in real life! They all asked about the snood (the red skin that hangs across a tom’s beak) and the beard (a tuft of coarse hair on a tom’s chest). Since the schools we visited were in St. Paul and Coon Rapids, many of the kids had never been on a farm before and maybe didn’t know how important farmers are to our economy and our world. The turkeys were very well behaved and everything went really well. We guess our work is paying off!
Overall, it was a really fun day!