Do Turkeys Have Ears? (Explained)

by Alex Kountry
Updated on

How do turkeys hear? Ever wondered about that?

Do turkeys have ears? Turkeys have ears but not the external/ outer ones that humans or some other animals you know have. This however doesn’t make the animal less adorable or smart. It just makes it different and endearing.

 Before you go checking for their ears however, remember they don’t have designated curvy fleshy shapes on the sides of their head that people picture when they think “ears”.

What you will instead are small holes in their heads.

This however doesn’t mean they can’t hear.

Can turkeys hear?

Do Turkeys Have Ears

Yes, turkeys can hear.

They can pick up sounds from around them and even tell where the sounds are coming from.

They often answer gobbles and owling sounds in the forest during the night.

Not only can these beautiful birds hear, they hear incredibly well which keeps them balanced and alert at all times.

Lack of flaps or pinna does not affect their hearing in any way contrary to some people’s belief.

Related: Do turkeys make good pets?

Do wild turkeys have good hearing?

Not only do turkeys have incredible eyesight, their hearing is also very good too.

A wild turkey can hear sounds clearly in the forest from far away, especially in the night.

This helps them to stay alert at all times and keeps them protected from predators.

Wild turkeys live in the forest where their predators abound, but having a good hearing helps them to survive.

They can hear the smallest of sounds their predators make even in the distance and they quickly run for their lives or fly up to roost in trees.

Their ability to fly aids their hearing in keeping them protected.

Where are a turkey’s ears located?

Turkeys’ ears are small holes in their heads which are located behind their eyes.

Their location makes it easy for sounds to be perceived accurately and precisely.

Wild turkeys can pick up sounds from all around even when they are not concentrating.

This is a huge advantage for them while feeding.

It helps them focus on foraging and feeding and at the same time alert to their surroundings.

These birds really are smart.

Looking for a comprehensive guide on how to raise turkeys?

How far can a turkey hear your call?

Turkeys have very good hearing and can hear your call from very far away.

You would be surprised at how far.

Some hunters have reported of turkeys answering their calls from 400 yards away, some 1/2 mile.

According to this, an hunter called with a slate about 2 miles away and then continued calling at 20 minutes interval.

Before long he heard the turkeys gobbling back at a very close distance.

They heard from that long distance and came running. That’s incredible.

All you have to do is camp at a close distance and call, if they don’t gobble back, wait for like 10 minutes and call again.

You might think they didn’t hear but they did. If you call right, they will answer you.

How good is a turkey’s hearing?

How good? Very good.

Turkeys hear from a great distance and can hear it from all around.

Not only can turkeys hear sounds, they can trace it to a specific location.

If you stand in a spot and call, then leave the place to stay somewhere farther, it’s only a matter of time before you see a gobbler standing in your former position.

They locate point of calls accurately.

They also have the ability to hear low frequency.

Sounds too minute for humans to hear.

This is a good ability for a prey to have in the forest.

Many times they survive in the forest because of this ability.

Do turkeys know their names?

Yes, turkeys can be made to know their names.

They have good hearing and can recognize different sounds.

They can even recognize different humans based on sounds, so they can learn to know their names if you are patient.

Turkeys’ hearing are so good that they can differentiate between themselves through sounds.

They each have different sounds so it is easy for them to recognize one another.

This is why it is easy for them to know their names.

They come to recognize how the name sounds.


Turkeys have ears and possess good hearing.

They do not have outer ears like humans and some other animals but their hearing is better.

They have holes in their heads behind their eyes where sounds go into.

They can pick sounds from around them and can even pin point the exact location where the sound is coming from.

Their inquisitive nature will make them seek out the sound and its location which is how hunters get to kill them.

Their superb hearing however keeps them protected.

They are able to detect predators from far away and fly up to safety in the trees.

Turkeys can your call from a mile or two away, which is incredible.

They will hear and if they wish, they’ll come seeking the sound.

They are amazing and can be made to know their names.

This is exceptionally cool because it makes bonding with them easier. They pick up sounds and can over time recognize and differentiate it from other sounds.

This is how they recognize their names. It’s the sound produced while saying the name.

A farmer once noticed that her turkeys recognized the sound of her friend’s car.

They didn’t like her so they always disperse and run out of sight whenever they hear the sound of her car.


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About the author

Alex Kountry

Alex Kountry is the founder of HayFarmGuy and has been a backyard farmer for over 10 years. Since then he has decided to write helpful articles that will help you become a better backyard farmer and know what to do. He also loves to play tennis and read books


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