Zen For Turkeys Before Big Day

Turkeys gather at The Turkey Farm in New Sharon, Maine, Wednesday, Nov. 12, 2003. The free-range broad breasted white turkeys reach slaughter weight after 17 to 19 weeks after being fed a special grain. (AP Photo/Pat Wellenbach) AP

The holidays can be stressful, not least if you're a turkey.

But relaxed birds are better, so Britain's National Farmer's Union has come up with a soothing plan.

Officials said Monday the organization has sent 114 farmers a compact disk of sounds including birds twittering in the early morning, wind chimes, whale sounds and the gobble of "happy turkeys," to play to their birds.

"It is well known that a stressed bird is more prone to disease," said a spokesman.

"Most of its energy goes into being frightened rather than growing and putting on weight. Many farmers who already play radios in sheds where they keep turkeys also believe the birds taste nicer. The CD is designed to find out what type of music calms birds the most."

The National Farmers' Union came up with the plan after consulting animal behavior experts at the Roslin Institute in Edinburgh, where the world's first cloned animal, Dolly the sheep, was produced.
  • Jaime Holguin

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