Color Phase Turkey Response Astounding!

Last week, my story The Lost Turkeys of East Texas drew a strong, positive response from readers.

There were comments across numerous media platforms but the best part was getting photos of other color-phase birds.

Natural anomalies always captivate people and getting outdoors lovers to share color phase turkey photos has been a great way to get people talking about turkeys and their habitat.

Photo by Chester Moore

And that is the goal of the Turkey Revolution project I established in 2019.

Here are some photos of color phase birds, beginning with Dan Williams who submitted this photo from Tyler County. Tyler is one of the counties that does not currently have an Eastern turkey season and is in the extreme southernmost extent of the birds range in Texas.

It’s great to see there are some turkeys there.

Photo Courtesy Dan Williams

This shot shows three of five birds in view with at least partial smoke color phase. The interesting thing about the bird on the right is it is smoke phase but has the standard red head. Many are gray.

Photo Courtesy Jimmy Jessup

Jimmy Jessup sent in this shot from south-central Louisiana. You can see the cinnamon color phase on the back half of this bird. It has the partial coloration of the Merriam’s bearded hen I photographed in Colorado in 2019. In the same area in 2020 I photographed several birds with partial cinnamon color.

A rare cinammon phase Merriam’s bearded hen the author photographed in Colorado.
Photo Courtesy Dave Troyer

David Troyer submitted this shot of his son Nathaniel with the mount of his stunning smoke-colored gobbler taken in Ohio. This is probably the most uniformly-colored smoke phase bird I have seen. Truly sunning.

Corey Anderson who was profiled with his big smoke-colored gobbler in our last article submitted these more recent photos from Minnesota.

This bird looks like an intermediate of the smoke and white phase. What a beauty!

Photo Courtesy Corey Anderson
Photo Courtesy Corey Anderson

Encountering wildlife is exciting.

Encountering wild creatures rare amongst their own populations is super exciting.

Moby Dick wouldn’t be as cool if he were a standard edition sperm whale, would he?

If you have photos or videos of color phase turkeys, please submit them to We would love to share them with our readers and use them as part of an as yet to be announced educational project that will take place in the spring.

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