Strutting Hen Takes on Jakes

It's been a long, hard and miserable winter up here in the Northeast. With the countdown to turkey season picking up pace, many of us are still wondering what sort of season we'll be faced with. Have we lost birds this winter? Has the lingering cold weather delayed gobbling and breeding activity? When--if ever--will the hardcore gobbling cut loose?

As we await those answers, we'd like to thank Maine resident Lou Dagneau for sending along this intriguing turkey photo that's worth a double take. Here's the note that came along with it:

We had a displaying hen here today--I have never seen one behave so much like a tom in all the time we have had them here. She had no snood or wattles, but she puffed into a ball, strutted and fanned, right along with the jakes. Her fan didn't get as vertical as the males but everything else was just like them. We've seen hens with beards and I've seen hens fan their tails, but always horizontally and never with all this other behavior.