Mendon bird is runner-up in Turkey of the Year contest!

Dale the Turkey Is Among Top Rescued Fowl in Thanksgiving Competition

Mendon— Dale would have joined the millions of turkeys who become Thanksgiving dinner every year if Maple Farm Sanctuary hadn’t rescued him from a local turkey farm and given him a lifelong home. Now, the handsome, white-feathered Dale spends his time with his mate, Daphne, of whom he is very protective. Dale is vocal and friendly and loves to show off—so he’ll relish the attention that comes with being named the second runner-up in PETA’s first-ever Turkey of the Year contest for rescued birds. Starting this week, Dale will be among the rescued turkeys featured on

“Thanksgiving is murder on turkeys, but compassionate rescuers like Maple Farm Sanctuary give lucky birds like Dale something to be thankful for,” says PETA Vice President Daphna Nachminovitch. “Rescued turkeys have been given a second chance at a life free from suffering on crowded factory farms—and that’s the real prize.”

More than 250 million turkeys are killed in the U.S. every year—including more than 40 million for Thanksgiving dinners alone. In nature, turkeys are protective and loving parents as well as spirited explorers who can climb trees and run as fast as 25 miles per hour. But most turkeys slated to be killed for food are crammed into filthy warehouses, where disease, smothering, and heart attacks are common. Turkeys are drugged and bred to grow such unnaturally large upper bodies that their legs often become crippled under the weight.

The winner of PETA’s contest, Jake, lives in North Carolina. Dale’s fellow runner-up, Tomas, lives in Rhode Island.

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