Erica Laurenzi was watching her dog, Stella, run around with their other dog on their 250-acre property in Maine when she noticed her playing with something that didn’t appear to be a toy. She went to investigate and was astounded to discover Stella had discovered an egg.
Laurenzi wasn’t sure what kind of egg Stella had discovered at first. It was a mystery, but she and her boyfriend tried to find the egg’s family anyway, hoping to return it to its original location.
“Amazed that they hadn’t broken it, we went looking for a nest,” Laurenzi told The Dodo. “There was no luck after an hour.” If the opportunity exists, I am a firm believer in returning it to the mother.”
Laurenzi took the egg home with her because she couldn’t find a nest. She’d previously rehabbed birds, so she was at least somewhat knowledgeable about the subject. and she quickly began researching how to best care for the mystery egg.
“I’ve raised a lot of sparrows and robins, but I’ve never cared for or hatched an egg,” Laurenzi explained. “The Googling began immediately… I knew it was an egg but had no idea what kind it was. We assumed it was a turkey because we’d seen them foraging on the land before. A Google search later confirmed that the egg was a true match. I stuffed the egg into my sports bra and drove to Tractor Supply in search of the Rolls Royce of incubators. Nothing but the best to give this egg the best chance of survival.”
Laurenzi placed the egg in the incubator and left it there for 25 days. She did extensive research and cared for it as best she could, and it finally began to hatch on the morning of her birthday. Stella sat and waited as the little turkey prepared to hatch. However, She was so proud of the egg she had discovered that she wanted to assist her mother in welcoming the baby turkey into the world.
“You could tell she knew something was going on the morning it started hatching,” Laurenzi said. “We had the incubator up high on our kitchen counter, away from any potential threats.” By the end of the day, she and I were sitting side by side on our counter stools, picking at its egg shell. She sat up all night watching it dry off and get its bearings.”
Laurenzi, like Stella, was completely mesmerized when the tiny turkey finally entered the world. Even though they were expecting it, it was still incredible when the turkey finally hatched after everything he’d been through before he was born.
“After all of our egg research, we were pretty sure it was a turkey, but we were still as stunned and amazed that all that little bird needed was inside an egg we stared at for almost a month,” Laurenzi said.
The baby turkey is about a week old and doing fantastically well. He defied all odds, and now his rescue family is dedicated to providing him with the best life possible.
“We intend to keep it (at our Maine property) and make it the mascot of Lost Mile Organic, our off-grid cabin rental project that we intend to launch next spring,” Laurenzi said. “Since the egg was discovered on that land, we intend to gradually reintroduce it to its natural habitat once it is strong and self-sufficient enough, but in the meantime, we will provide it with a very lush enclosure that it can come and go as it pleases during the day and be protected in at night.”
While Stella adores her little turkey pal, the two have mostly observed each other from afar. Because they intend to reintroduce the turkey to the wild, they don’t want him to believe that all dogs and furry wild animals are his friends, which could jeopardize his safety. Stella enjoyed both helping to bring the turkey into the world and watching him grow up.
@lostmileorganic That time your dog comes out of the woods with a mystery egg 🤷🏻♀️🐣🦃 Happy, healthy, growing and warm! #babyturkey #ReadyForHell #MINDORDERING ♬ Flowers (feat. Nori) – In Love With A Ghost
Laurenzi explained, “Stella does go in and peek over the side of the brooder to check on her little friend, exchanging glances and little chirps.”
Laurenzi had no idea what to expect when Stella discovered a mystery egg, and everyone is relieved that everything worked out as it did. They’ll give the turkey all the space he needs to grow and can’t wait to release him back into the wild.