A massive turkey living in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park proved to a woman this Thanksgiving season that the hunters can easily become the prey.
The Instagram page Tourons of Yellowstone posted footage of an unwitting tourist who stopped by the road of the Tennessee park in a section called Cade’s Cove to presumably take photos of the bird. But when she neared it, it turned on her.
In the video, the woman laughs hysterically as the turkey chases her, flaunts its tail feathers, and fiercely gobbles. She attempts to shoo it away with her phone, but the bird doesn’t relent. Meanwhile, another turkey lurks in the background and waits to see if its friend tags it in.
Another woman stands just outside the driver’s seat and watches, amused, as the other tries dodging the turkey. And just before the camera cuts out, the second turkey dashes in to attack.
The Two Turkeys Are Notorious to Great Smoky Mountains Visitors
In the comments, people poke fun at the woman for trying to socialize with wildlife. But the video doesn’t show if she intentionally got too close to the birds or if they sought her out. And one person came to her defense claiming that they recognize the wattle-necked duo. And the birds are notoriously ferocious to Great Smoky Mountains parkgoers. So she may not have intentionally overstepped her boundaries.
“We camped in Cade’s Cove…” wrote mernerluvsu. “They roamed the campsites and were vicious! We saw them get after people for no reason at all! One being my son-in-law! I was told the park relocated them for being so aggressive.”
And some other people pointed out that all turkeys are mean
“They’ll come after you, unprovoked–even in your own backyard,” added jmsargent1.
According to The National Park Service, wild turkeys are a fairly common sight in the Great Smoky Mountains and other parks these days. But not that long ago, they were nearly extinct. They may also surprise people with their gigantic size and ability to fly to treetops.
And as the people in the comments wrote, the birds can be incredibly aggressive, especially males during the breeding season. Turkeys that are used to being fed by humans tend to be even more confrontational because they feel entitled to handouts, and if people don’t have food, the birds become angry.
Unfortunately, the animals can sense fear. So if they approach someone and make them uncomfortable, they will continue to charge and peck. However, turkeys can’t do a lot of damage to a person. If someone meets an angry turkey in the wild, the best way to end the standoff is by making themselves looker larger and more dangerous by spreading their arms and making loud noises.