Brooklyn , NY – November 10, 2009 – “Franklin,” a magnificent male wild turkey, resides with his female companions at the Wildlife Conservation Society’s Prospect Park Zoo. The wild turkey is an American bird, originally brought to Europe in early 16th century by Spanish conquistadors. The species was transported to England and throughout northern Europe. The English then brought the domestic turkeys back with them when they settled the colonies. In 1776, in search of a national bird, Benjamin Franklin nominated the wild turkey as a symbol because of its courage. Visitors can see Franklin strutting in the barn area on Thanksgiving day and the other 364 days during the year.   In the field, the Wildlife Conservation Society is working on turkey conservation in Guatemala – home of the spectacular oscillated turkey, which is a close cousin to the wild turkey.

Prospect Park Zoo – Open every day of the year. Admission is $7 for adults, $4 for seniors 65 and older, $3 for kids 3-12, free for children under 3. Zoo hours are 10am to 5pm weekdays, and 10am – 5:30pm weekends, April through October, and 10am – 4:30pm daily, November through April.  The Prospect Park Zoo is located at 450 Flatbush Avenue in Prospect Park, Brooklyn. For further information, call 718-399-7339 or visit

The Wildlife Conservation Society saves wildlife and wild places worldwide. We do so through science, global conservation, education and the management of the world's largest system of urban wildlife parks, led by the flagship Bronx Zoo. Together these activities change attitudes towards nature and help people imagine wildlife and humans living in harmony. WCS is committed to this mission because it is essential to the integrity of life on Earth.