If noisy birds are an issue where you live, but you still want to have backyard poultry, choosing birds that are more likely to be on the quieter side of things is a wise move.
You’ve looked around and decided to consider chickens and turkeys. Which bird makes more noise, turkeys or chickens?
Generally speaking, turkeys are quiet birds to raise and make less noise than chickens. Occasionally a turkey will gobble, which will be just as loud, if not louder, as a rooster crowing.
Is Raising Your Own Meat Turkeys Worth It? is an article I wrote that goes over the budget to raise turkeys, if you want to the see the cost breakdowns. Even if you are keeping the turkeys, the budget to raise them will be the same.
Overall, turkeys are quieter than chickens
In day to day activities and interactions with each other and people, turkeys are quieter than chickens. We see the turkeys walking around looking for grass and bugs, just like the chickens do, but the ones you hear are the chickens.
We hardly notice the turkeys at all. They keep themselves busy and unless I happen to run across one of them while doing something else, I hardly notice where they are throughout the day.
The chickens are a different story. Whenever we go out to the barn, even in the wee hours to check on new lambs, you can bet it’s a rooster I’ll hear while the turkeys remain silent.
Chickens are constantly making noise, even the hens
I hear our hens make a growly noise as the roam around looking for snacks. I take it to be more like the purr of a cat, but I don’t know exactly what it is. I can just tell you that they make more noise than you might guess.
It’s not that this growling is loud, it’s not, but it does seem to happen more often than not.
The other time when I really hear the chickens is when I am running around in the barn with a flashlight, they do not like that!
Chickens are chattering in the background of all my videos
I just put up a video of some newborn piglets, born the morning of the video. You can hear the chickens in the background, this one is in the rafters above where I’m filming. She’s chattering away up there!
The turkeys are up and about while I’m filming, but where are they? Don’t know exactly, because they are quiet!
Tom turkeys occasionally make more noise
The only time when turkeys really out shine chickens as noise makers is when the toms gobble, this is more of a problem when they are startled or if it’s breeding season.
Normally, turkeys, both toms and hens are quiet and we hardly notice that they are walking around, but when they are startled and decide to gobble, you can’t miss them!
I do have to mention that adult toms will fight during breeding season, usually this involves puffing up and circling each other then eventually grabbing and yanking on the other tom’s snood.
This fighting isn’t exactly loud, but they do tussle around a bit. You’ll definitely notice them making more noise than normal, so keep only one if you need things to stay on the quiet side.
If you are raising meat turkeys, don’t worry too much here. While some of your birds will undoubtedly be toms, they will not be old enough to get into too much fighting by the time they are market ready.
Beginner’s Guide To Keeping Turkeys is a nice overview type article from PoultryKeeper.com, scroll down for information on deworming and fencing.