Ocellated Turkey


The ocellated turkey was never domesticated as the wild turkey.

70% of the identifiable bones excavated from the palace at Mayapan, occupied for centuries before Europeans arrived, were from ocellated turkeys and showed an increased size that suggested they were kept captive and fattened. The Maya valued ocellated turkeys for ceremonial banquets. On the island of Cozumel, where the Spanish and the Maya first met, both ocellated and domesticated turkeys were eaten.

Sources: (Heinrichs, 2010; McRoberts, 2014)
Image: Roberto González



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