Zelda, Battery Park’s wild turkey, is presumed dead

Zelda, a wild turkey that settled in Battery Park over a decade ago and was considered a symbol of the park’s revitalization after years of neglect, was likely struck and killed by a car in late September.

The Battery Conservancy said Thursday that it had information that the bird’s body was spotted on South Street near Pier 11 on Sept. 26.

The organization waited to publicize her death “to see if she would come back,” said Battery Conservancy spokeswoman Nicole Brownstein, in an email. “But we are sure that it was her.” She said Zelda rarely disappeared for very long, save during Superstorm Sandy.

The turkey, who may have migrated to the southern tip of Manhattan from the Bronx, made her first appearance at the park on May 5, 2003. She soon became a regular guest at park events, and was last seen on Sept. 17, greeting guests at the 11th annual Battery Gardeners Luncheon.