For the birds: Farm hosts bizarre peacock-turkey love triangle
Published Thursday, May 18, 2017 8:38AM EDT
It started five years ago, when a mysterious, flamboyant stranger showed up at a farmhouse in B.C., intent on winning the heart of the woman who lived there.
That stranger was a peacock, and that woman was a turkey – a turkey who refused to give her heart away to her showy suitor.
Farm owner Mark Hogeweide says he's inadvertently become caught up in a bizarre love triangle involving himself, Fred the peacock and Gertie the (ugly) turkey.
"The peacock is kind of in love with the turkey," Hogeweide told CTV Vancouver. When asked how he knows this, Hogeweide is matter-of-fact with his reply: "He's tried to (expletive) her."
But Gertie and Fred have yet to seal the deal, so to speak, because Gertie's son, Tom, keeps getting in the way. "Tom Turkey will fight with Fred, and Fred usually goes off with his tail between his legs," Hogeweide said.
He adds that Gertie simply isn't interested in Fred, despite Fred's showy attempts to woo her. Instead, Gertie's favourite man on the farm is Hogeweide, her owner.
"I guess she was imprinted at a young age, imprinting meaning that she got connected to humans," he said. "She likes me."
Hogeweide says he adopted Gertie several years ago from her previous owner, who did not want her anymore. "She's ugly but cute," he said of the bird.
As for the peacock, its origins remain a mystery, but it's been enamoured with Gertie for years, and simply hasn't left.
"Fred just arrived in my yard one day, showing his plumage," Hogeweide said.
But as an unwilling party to this barnyard soap opera, Hogeweide has finally found a solution that he thinks will work for everybody: he bought a female peacock for Fred.
"I was concerned about Fred's well-being," he said. "He had the wrong ideas about turkeys, so I thought maybe I should get him a peahen."
That peahen is currently in isolation on Mark's farm, where she is acclimatizing herself to the environment before she meets her intended mate. Soon, however, Hogeweide will introduce Fred to his new mate, Freddie.
"I can't wait for the day she gets out and they can hang together," Mark said.
With files from CTV Vancouver