People say that having chickens is a slippery slope. Like you get “just a couple chickens” and then one day you’re going to lose your balance, slide down the hill, knock yourself out, and when you finally come-to you realize you’ve become crazy bird lady.
For me that day was today.
Technically I started down that slippery slope a few months ago when–after an unfortunate number of glasses of wine–I decided to buy some guinea fowl eggs for my broody hen to hatch. Then she decided she didn’t want to hatch them, and on the very same day (when I was debating what to do with the egss) my dude is out on the town for a bachelor party, and strikes up a conversation with a woman who has a broody hen. Facebook friendships ensue, her Silkie sits on the eggs, and a few weeks later, this!
The only problem was that of the dozen eggs, only four hatched, and of those four, only one Guinea made it this far. Just one.
I went to pick up the one chick (technically they’re called keets) today, and after some conversation about how the foster mom was getting picked on by the other chickens at her place, and the desire to have her raise the chick a bit longer, I ended up with one very fluffy black chicken and her foster keet in my barn.
This would be all well and good if Eva (the silkie) was raising a baby chicken, but she’s raising a guinea hen. The whole point of the guineas was to try and help minimize the tick problem I have every spring, and one guinea who thinks she’s a chicken probably isn’t going to do the trick.
So then I found a nearby farm that had some guineas for sale, which is how I also ended up with this…
Do you know what it’s like driving for 30 minutes with guinea hens in the cat-carrier in the back seat of your car? Like this…
Except it goes on for eternity.
These guineas are a few weeks older than the chick, so they need their own spot until the other little one is big enough to leave mom and join them. I decided to make use of my old chicken coop (this one.) Luckily my neighbors tractor has forks on it, so it made quick work of moving the coop to a new spot in the pasture.
After it was all set up…
The body-to-head ratio on these birds cracks me up.
They also are super uncool with selfies…
They certainly aren’t going to be lap-nugs like some of my other birds…
Which is fine, as long as they eat all the ticks.
And THAT is how I ended up with five more Nugs on my property, like a crazy person. I think I’m done with birds now, at least for the winter.
(Famous last words…)