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Guinea Hens and Tattle-Tale Chickens

27 Jun

Guinea Hens and Tattle-Tale Chickens

Okay so I know that lawns are so not politically correct. Yes we are in a horrible drought. BUT… in my defense, my little patch of green is little and is a native grama grass that is a low water consumer. I have my little patch of green temporarily fenced with pallets and tin left over from our roof to keep the hens out (they eat EVERYTHING).

We also have a decent size herd of Guinea Hens. If you don’t know what a guinea is you need to learn about them (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Guineafowl) they are birds that are so ugly they are cute and they are great watchdogs. They tell me when there are snakes or coyotes around, when I park my pickup not in accordance with their wishes or if anything new appears on the porch.

They are elusive egg layers. Once a nest is disturbed, unlike the chickens, they won’t lay there again. They are usually nestled in tall weeds on rocky hill sides or in large patches of stickers! The last nest we found had 37 eggs in it! Guinea chicks are also the most requested hatchlings people ask us for. So when we find a guinea nest it’s like finding a leprechaun’s pot of gold!

As I’m sitting here in the house because it’s 90-something degrees outside (yes that is HOT where I live) working on figuring out this blogging thing I hear a ruckus amongst my chickens. I walk out onto the porch and find that there is a black hen inside the patch o’ green and all her buddies are on the outside ratting her out as loudly as they can. She sees me and makes a run for it like a child with her hand in the cookie jar. I sigh and am about to walk back inside when I happen to look off just below the edge and there lays the clutch- a small one but a victory in guinea gold all the same!

Guinea eggs look very similar to small chicken eggs but the shell is harder and more porous feeling. They come in a variety of shades of tan to pinkish white. Into the incubator these will go!

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