Tuesday, 26 October 2021

See who's minding turkeys

WITH just over two weeks to go until Christmas Day, many people will be thinking about their turkey dinner.

It’s not surprising, therefore, that Copas Turkeys are taking extra precautions to protect their birds.

They have introduced 10 alpacas, named Blitzen, Comet, Cupid, Dasher, Dancer, Donner, Onion, Prancer, Sage and Vixen, to try to prevent foxes from targeting the turkeys.

Owner Tom Copas first came up with the idea in 2015 after a series of fox attacks resulted in hundreds of the birds being killed.

“Alpacas are used all over the world to deter wild dogs and coyotes,” he says.

“We’ve always had dogs that keep the birds safe, but they can’t be on the ranges all the time, unlike the alpacas who stay there day and night.”

Alpacas are native to South America and react aggressively to foxes because in the wild they would try to kill unguarded young alpacas.

Mr Copas adds: “Alpacas are very territorial and although they seem stand-offish, they’re docile and
co-exist pretty happily with the turkeys.”

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