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The Beltsville Small White turkey was created by a breeding program started by the Beltsville Agricultural Research Center (BARC) in Beltsville, Maryland. The breeding program lasted from 1934-1941, and it was designed for the creation of a turkey that would meet consumer demands for a smaller bird. Researchers used Bronze, Narragansett, White Austrian, White Holland, and Wild turkey to develop the Beltsville Small White. In 1951, it became a recognized Variety by the American Poultry Association. However, by the 1970s the bird was almost extinct. Today, conservation efforts are being made in the United States and Canada.


The Beltsville Small White is a small bird, with young toms weighing an average of 17 lbs and young hens weighing an average of 10 lbs. The bird has white plumage and a red to bluish-white head. Additionally, Beltsville Small White Turkeys have a black beard, dark brown eyes, horn-colored beaks, and pinkish-white toes and shanks.




"Beltsville Small White Turkey." The Livestock Conservancy. The Livestock Conservancy, n.d. Web. 9 July 2019.


"A Brief History of Turkey Research and the Role of the Beltsville Agricultural Research Center." USDA-ARS. USDA-ARS, n.d. Web. 9 July 2019.

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