Poult in peril rescued

Vacationing family, with the help of Tisbury P.D,, rescues a baby turkey trapped in a storm drain.

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Kai Rosenberg looks down into the storm drain where the baby turkey was trapped. — Matt Rosenberg

A baby turkey had a close call on Sunday. Disaster might have struck, if not for the intervention of some heroic passersby. While driving in Vineyard Haven on Edgartown–Vineyard Haven Road on their way to the ferry, Amy, Matt, Kai, and Max Rosenberg spotted a rafter of turkeys (yes, that is the collective noun) crossing the street. While in transit, one of the babies stumbled into a storm drain.

Seeing the imperiled poult, the family pulled over and approached the baby turkey. Matt, the lighthouse keeper for Nubble Light in York, Maine, and his son Kai, 17, lifted the storm grate and spotted the distressed poult. They used a paddleboard paddle to block the turkey from running out into the outflow area of the storm grate, which would’ve rendered it lost forever. 

“We called the Tisbury Police, and they dispatched Sgt. [Max] Sherman,” said Rosenberg. “I told him on the phone, and I think he might have laughed.”

Sherman brought a minnow net with him, which he used to scoop the poult to safety. After retrieving it from its immediate danger, the group even went as far to reunite the hen with its baby chick.

“He had it in the net, and we had no idea what to do with it, because the hen wasn’t around anymore,” said Rosenberg. “Sgt. Sherman and I went back through a couple of yards and through the woods. Finally, we heard the hen clucking, and it was still kind of searching for the lost chick. [Sgt. Sherman] took it through the woods to where the hen was clucking and put it down, and the hen came back to it. It was really kind of a sweet thing.” 

Sgt. Sherman could not immediately be reached for comment.

Rosenberg is no stranger to helping animals in need. In his free time, he volunteers for Marine Mammals of Maine in seal response and rescue. He shared that the experience was quite a pleasant way to end their family vacation. 

“It was like one of those things where we were like, ‘Well, what do we do? We can’t just leave it here.’ That was definitely the high point,” said Rosenberg.