Go wild! Vote for the weirdly beautiful wild turkeys of Alameda! They deserve widespread voter support because they favor open space, the urban forest, and pedestrian-friendly neighborhoods.
Despite an overabundance of feathers — as many as 6,000 — they mostly get around by walking, even though they can fly short distances and sometimes perch in trees to avoid predators.
These birds campaign as a family, reflecting strong family values. They don’t need lawn signs or mailers — their presence says everything about them. They’re easy to talk to and never put on airs.
They naturally love our parks, such as the O Club at Alameda Point where they were recently seen foraging for one of their favorite food groups — green grass — while canvassing the neighborhood. When the family of seven finished grazing on the lawn and sampling a few flower petals, they quickly moved across the street to the shaded green area next to one of the “Big Whites” residences.
A related turkey species, the Californian turkey (Meleagris californica), is a species that became extinct about 10,000 years ago. “The present Californian wild turkey population derives from wild birds re-introduced during the 1960s and 70s from other areas by game officials,” according to Wikipedia. They proliferated after 2000 to become an everyday sight in the East Bay by 2015.
Wild turkeys can work across the isle, and strongly support a robust Urban Forest Plan, a proactive Climate Action Plan, a pedestrian-friendly Transportation Plan, and species diversity. Go out on a limb and vote for three out of the seven turkeys. Ranked-choice voting not yet available.
Originally published in the Alameda Post.
Below are more photos of the wild turkey family at the Al DeWitt Officers’ Club (aka the O Club) at Alameda Point on October 30, 2022.
The shaded green lawn enjoyed by wild turkeys at the O Club illustrates that habitat matters in an urban setting. Keeping some amount of lawn and grasses on public property serves an important purpose for wildlife and could be irrigated responsibly when the East Bay Municipal Utility District’s recycled water line is extended from Oakland over to Alameda Point.