Rare white turkey spotted in Howard

A rare white turkey stands out in its flock in Howard (Photo: Joe Rabitoy)
A rare white turkey stands out in its flock in Howard (Photo: Joe Rabitoy)(WBAY)
Published: May. 8, 2019 at 4:15 PM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

A homeowner in Howard has captured a rare sight with his camera.

Joe Rabitoy couldn't believe it when he noticed a new member in the flock of wild turkeys in his neighborhood. This one certainly sticks out.

"It's amazing because for how white she is, you can see her from across the field, you can see her. You don't even need a camera. You pick her out like that," Rabitoy said.

With his phone, Rabitoy has been taking pictures and videos of the white turkey daily.

"She has been hanging around with all the females, and the males have been chasing her around here for the last week-and-a-half," he noticed.

According to DNR biologists, white turkeys are rare -- but depending on what kind of white. It's estimated about 1 in 100 wild turkeys are considered smoke gray, while true albino turkeys are one in 100,000.

Where this hen falls in to the mix is hard to tell without a close-up examination, but Rabitoy says after posting pictures on his Facebook page she's getting plenty of love on social media.

"I'm originally from Upper Michigan, so I'm a Yooper, and I have a lot of hunting friends up there that none of them have ever seen one in the wild, so I'm getting a lot of that's awesome. Incredible. It's amazing to see it here and living in Howard."

Unlike albino deer, which are protected, it is legal to hunt white turkeys in Wisconsin -- but in the spring, hunters can only take aim at male turkeys.