Monday, January 23, 2012

Golden turkeys

With the price of gold over $1600 an ounce, I thought it would be good to relate a story about gold nuggets in the turkey gizzards. This is a story that my father and uncle told me about how they found gold nuggets in the turkey gizzards. At the time my father and his oldest brother were left to manage the farm, while the rest of the family went to California to work. One day after selling some of the old breeding stock to a butcher in Reno, Nevada my father got a phone call from the butcher. The butcher wanted to know if he could get more of those turkeys and was willing to pay three times the normal price. Now breeding stock is tough and only good for making soup. My father wanted to know why his turkeys were in such demand, so he did some investigation. After a few phone calls my father learned that the butcher was finding gold nuggets in the turkey gizzards. My uncle and my father immediately butchered a couple of turkeys and sure enough they did find small gold nuggets. But where did the turkeys get the gold nuggets from? In those days turkeys were herded much like cows into open fields for feed. And in the process of feeding on alfalfa they periodically pick up bits of gravel and sand. They are especially attracted to anything shiny and will eat it just to find out what it is. Turkeys and other birds use this grit in their gizzards to chew up their food. They do not have any teeth so they swallow their food whole. Well one thing led to another and they ended up butchering the entire flock of 300 turkeys. They searched for months trying to find the gold on the old homestead, but never did find the source. The only conclusion they could come up with is that some old prospector lost his gold pouch and the turkeys founded it. When everything was said and done, they had managed to collect enough gold from the gizzards to replace the flock of turkeys, before their parents returned home from California. To this day no one knows where the turkeys got the gold from but people still go looking for the legendary Golden turkey gizzards. The moral to the story ; don't always be in a hurry to throw out those gizzards when you are butchering. Those turkeys and chickens may be worth more than you know!

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