Loose ‘Turkey’ Trots to Castellammare


Pacific Palisades is used to seeing its fair share of coyotes, cats and other critters.
But on Monday, Nov. 27, Donna Partipilo was walking home with her dogs when she heard the distant call of the wild—or so she thought.

“At first I thought it was some sort of duck,” Partipilo told the Palisadian-Post. “Then I saw her.”

Trailing behind Partipilo from Los Liones Canyon was a bird with steely blue plumage and a knack for playful prowling.

The wandering fowl followed Partipilo all the way to her home where she trotted up and down the street before taking up quarters atop a POD moving container.

Believing that her new feathered neighbor was a wild turkey from nearby, the Castellammare homeowner took to social media site Nextdoor to see if she could find help in rescuing the bird.

Other members of the community soon chimed in on the dotty ordeal, including Palisadian turkey expert and animal rights activist Karen Dawn.

Dawn told the Post that the bird featured in the photos was not a turkey at all but most likely a type of guineafowl—also known as a “pet speckled hen.”

“I’m familiar with pretty much every type of turkey and she doesn’t appear to  have the right kind of face,” she explained.

Appearing more like a vulture than a downy chicken, the guineafowl is a barnyard bird known for their loud, unusual squawking and an affinity for high perching.

Often overlooked as backyard pets, the eccentric hens are known to be excellent “watchdogs,” fighting off trespassing animals and even unwelcome humans.

By Monday night, neighbors were still trying to classify the bird’s species when two local pet guardians showed up on Partipilo’s property equipped with a box, feed and a ladder.

“The man who came to get the bird talked to her nose to nose while feeding her,” she reported. “He was like the ‘turkey whisperer.’”

On Tuesday, Nov. 28, a representative at the California Wildlife Center confirmed that the bird in question was indeed a guinea