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Poultry World has profiled turkey lovers but never have we seen one with such dedication as Joe Hutto, a biologist from Florida who lived for a year with a clutch of Wild Turkey poults as they grew into maturity.

He undertook the experiment to study the birds behaviour in a way that had never been done before, letting the birds bond with him as their ‘mother’ and then raising them in the wilderness near his home.

The story is, like anything in the wild, both tragic and inspiring and is a fascinating insight into the wild ancestor of the modern bird.

Check it out on iPlayer.  Or read the book that Hutto wrote about his time with the birds, Illumination in the Flatwoods.

And while you’re looking up heart warming tales of people and animals forging life long bonds check out…
-The story of the two Aussies who raised a lion cub in their London flat. Then returned him to the wild. And finally returned to visit him after a year and found he remembered them. And the original clip.