Save the Battery Park Turkey

A new creature has taken up residence in Battery Park. A couple of times over the past few weeks I have observed a lone turkey (a hen, I think) in Battery Park. Battie often hangs around in the closed playground adjacent to the Staten Island Ferry or on the lawn just West of the playground and carousel construction areas.


As you can see in the picture, the bird has clearly learned to stay undercover to avoid the thousands of tourists, commuting New Yorkers, and dozens of dogs that are off-leash in the area each morning and evening. Battie is hidden under a table in a part of the park that, due to construction, is closed and fenced.

I feel so sorry for this poor bird that is so clearly out of place – a sad and lonely animal that generally flies very little, and usually lives in a flock. How did it come to Battery Park? Is there a wildlife service that can trap it and relocate it to a larger natural area with other turkeys?

Update: Apparently Battie is actually named Zelda, and she is a long time resident of the area and Manhattan’s only turkey:

So, it appears my pleas to have her moved will fall on deaf ears. Instead, perhaps we could bring her a mate?

Update 10/14/14:

Zelda, the Battery Park Turkey, was struck and killed by a car a couple of weeks ago.  (


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