The turkey wasn't always so dumb:

Generally considered cranially vacant even for a birdthe turkey wasn’t always such a buffoon.  The wild turkey was historically considered a rather shrewd critter, difficult to fool with standard hunting ploys and surprisingly agile. Did you know, for example, that wild turkeys can climb trees?  And if you throw an apple to a group of wild turkeys they’ll play with it like a football, according to Oregon State University poultry scientist Tom Savage.

We’ve all heard that Ben Franklin was so enamored with the wild turkey that he thought it should have been named the national bird instead of the bald eagle. He reasoned that the turkey embodied the resilience and street smarts of the new Americans (unlike the austere, detached eagle that seems more French). Back then, the turkey had class and enjoyed a level of respect rare among fowl.   

But then we started domesticating them, and every bit of the turkey’s appealing attributes were drained out like so much broth.

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