More Baby Chickens!

August 5, 2010

Yep, it’s still a chick, chick, here, and a chick, chick there!

These little guys are a few weeks old, but the mama hen has been keeping them in tall weeds in the goat and llamas pen.  That’s actually a pretty smart way to keep them safe.  The dogs patrol around there, and hawks and other flying predators can’t see them down in the dense weeds.

Continue reading

Guinea Fowl Family

July 22, 2010

The three guinea hens are running around now with 8 little keets.  I can see them far off in the field, running through the grass.

guinea fowl

3 head swivel towards me when I get too close!

The baby guinea keets have to really struggle to run through the grass on their short legs and keep up with the adults.

Guinea fowl

Run, run, as fast as you can!

You can see how hard the little ones work in this video…. but ignore all the wind sound please!

.
The little pale gray one is still hanging in there with the rest.

guinea fowl

Baby Guinea Keets in Grass

They have gotten brave enough these days to bring the babies in when we throw out feed.

Guinea Fowl Birds

Chow time!

It certainly doesn’t take long for the baby guinea keets to learn to eat corn and bugs and everything else they see the hens eat!

baby guinea birds

Food, glorious food!

Which is, of course, a good thing or the babies would soon starve!

And then there were two. . .

July 19, 2010

Yesterday evening The Farmer and I saw a little white “chick-or-keet” when we threw out some feed.  The Farmer commented it “looked different.”  And it did.  The legs didn’t look as long.  I thought maybe it was getting more fuzz and/or feathers that just covered up some of the legs.

But then this morning I was looking out the window and saw TWO white heads bobbing through the grass in the main pasture.  Well duh!  That little keet looked different because it WAS different…. there are at least two of them running around out there!

We still have the original “chick-or-keet” that I took another picture of this morning when I went out to feed . . .

The original Chick-or-Keet!

Got to say, it still looks like a baby chick, not a keet.  But the mama guinea hen is very protective of this little one, and chases away anyone that gets near.

But what about the other little head bobbing out in the pasture?  I could see the original elsewhere, and there were some little brown keets with another set of guinea hens.  And one pale one. . .

Guinea fowl.

Definitely a second little white head bobbing around in the grass!

I couldn’t go out right then to get a closer look, because I was waiting for the Mediacom guys (AGAIN!) to come check on our intermittent service.  When they had come and gone, I finally got to go out and do morning chores.  The hens with the new keets didn’t come in to get some grain.  I finally found them out in the llamas pen. 

At first I didn’t see the pale one.  There were some little brown ones running after the trio of hens, but no white one.  However, I could hear the “peep, peep” of little keets left behind, and homed in on the sound until I found some more in the tall grass, including the white one.

Light gray guinea baby.

Discovered, one little keet in the grass!

Now this one, I have NO doubt is a guinea keet.  I’ve seen that coloration before.  And even though the colors are different, you can see the same pattern on the head and neck as the brown keets.

Toby thought it was fun looking for hidden keets, and spotted one of the brown ones for me.

Dog and guinea baby.

"Hey Mom, I found another one!"

You can see the same stripe pattern on the “regular” looking keet’s head as is on the light gray one.

baby guinea keet

The usual brown and black marked guinea keet.

So while the jury is still out on our original “Chick-or-Keet”, this latest pale one is definitely a guinea baby.

Guinea nesting in weeds.

I know of at least one more nesting guinea besides this one!

Stay tuned… there are still more guineas like the one above sitting on nests!

Back In The HOT South. . .

July 15, 2010

Yes, we’re home again!  Back to heat in the high 90s… sigh….

Actually, we got home Tuesday night, but I’ve been trying to catch up a little on home and farm chores.  When you’ve been gone for a week, it means you’re bringing home a bunch of laundry to wash for one thing!

When I did chores yesterday morning, I noticed a few additions.  One hen has a couple of little chicks following her around now.

Chicken hen with two baby chickens

She was sitting on a at least a dozen eggs, but I guess as soon as a couple hatched, she was out of there!

And then I noticed this little fluff-ball. . .

Keet

At first I thought it was a little chick.  Perhaps a little long-legged, but we get a lot of white chicks.

It has some interesting dark markings on the back, however, so not totally white.

Keet

Then I saw who is mothering the little thing…

Guinea hen and keet

Well now, THAT’s interesting!  Our little guinea keets are usually brown and black.  So the question is, did this guinea hen hatch out a chicken egg, or is this really a keet?

At first I figured it to be a chicken, but now I’m not so sure.  We had some white guinea fowl a few years ago, when we first got guineas.  They didn’t last long, because the predators seem to find them too easily. 

But the genes are still floating around in the flock, so … maybe this is a for real keet.  Guess we’ll know in a few weeks, if it survives long enough to feather out.

I hope the adult guineas keep looking after this little baby.  It’s a cute little thing.

Guinea Nest

June 2, 2010

Actually, we have several guineas on several nests.  I know where three of the nests are, but you can bet there are more out in the tall grass and weeds.

There is a trio of guineas nesting out in the llamas pen.  They usually have a couple of hens sitting on the nest, and another guinea that sort of stands guard.  There are about 3 dozen eggs in this nest.

LOTS of eggs!

They didn’t like me up close, so for a while, they left the nest.

3 Noisy Guineas

There are also a couple of nests in the flower bed that encircles a big oak tree in the front yard.  I see one on a nest hidden in tall plants. . .

Guinea fowl sitting on a nest.

While there are two sitting on another nest…

Two guinea fowl on nest

There is usually another guinea fowl or two wandering around close.

No telling how many will actually hatch out eggs.  They are prone to sit a long time, then leave before they actually hatch out keets.  But enough of them DO stay on the nest that we usually have a population explosion…

We shall see!