Native Americans bred turkeys for their feathers, which were used for both practical and religious purposes. American archaeologists write this in the scientific journal Journal of Archaeological Sciences. They examined a feather blanket hundreds of years old from the southwestern United States.
Archaeologists have found a blanket of 11,500 turkey feathers entwined together. The blanket was made eight hundred years ago by the “pueblo culture,” which is made up of indigenous tribes who lived in what is now Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico and Utah.
The blanket is 99 inches wide and 108 inches long and is found in Utah. The springs are tied with a 180 m long rope. Researchers believe that at least four to ten turkeys are needed to make the blanket.
Feather blankets retain heat well and according to archaeologists have been of great importance for people to live at higher altitudes. Most of the early Native American settlements were at an altitude of 1.5 km.
The researchers concluded that these tribes had to breed turkeys to get enough feathers. Presumably, the birds were not plucked, but were plucked when they fell naturally.
Many of the turkey bones have also been carefully buried, indicating the tribes’ cultural or ritual significance.
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