‘Marshmallow is for life, not just for Christmas’ is the cry of a member of staff at Badgers Mead Farm in Five Ashes.
Marshmallow is one of the Heathfield Road farm’s KellyBronze turkeys but is not the same as all the others.
Due to its beautiful white feathers, as opposed to the usual black, the turkey had to be kept separate from the other birds which were making it literally top of the pecking order.
Looking after the bird while it has been in isolation has meant Tracy Day has become attached to Marshmallow and now she wants farmer Nev Champion to save it from someone’s Christmas table.
She has made posters to back her campaign and word has apparently spread as far as Australia and New Zealand.
The posters read ‘Save Marshmallow’, ‘Marshmallow must live’ and even ‘Go Vegan! From Marshmallow’.
“Marshmallow came to us in June and was a yellowy colour,” she said.
“We knew he was going to be different – we just didn’t expect he would be quite so different.
“About a month later the other birds started pecking him.
“The others are fed automatically but I go in to feed Marshmallow and he is quite tame. He has some toys in there.
“It started out as a bit of fun to save him and Nev thinks I’m quite mad but I’m sure there’s a way of keeping him on the farm.
“This is the first bird I’ve become attached to and I need as much help as I can get to keep him here.”
Nev said they had never seen a white turkey in 20 years of rearing KellyBronze.
“We have 4,500 black turkeys and one white one appeared in the middle of them,” he said.
“Tracy insists on keeping it. She’s locked the door on it and I can’t get to it.”
The Champion family have been farming at Badgers Mead Farm near Heathfield for nearly 30 years. In 1994 Nev Champion became the first franchisee for the now famous KellyBronze Turkeys.