I am SO cross with my guinea mothers!

Discussion in 'Guinea Fowl' started by BritinMO, Jun 13, 2011.

  1. BritinMO

    BritinMO Chillin' With My Peeps

    135
    0
    101
    Apr 18, 2011
    I am KICKING myself, I KNEW something was going on yesterday in the coop - 3 very active and healthy babies bouncing around - but both mothers were off the nest wandering around in the coop and the remaining 20 or so eggs were scattered around.................my instinct was that they had given up on the rest of the eggs as those were not going to hatch. So what do I do - open the door to the coop and put the 'barrier' up as usual to prevent the babies from being able to get out - go out riding for the day - get back - and NO ONE is in the coop and no sign of the 2 mothers with chicks anywhere! How those 2 hopeless mothers got the chicks over that barrier is a mystery to me.........................! Jeepers, they have a perfect safe environment with food, water, and every other luxury they could want to raise their babies in - and what do they do - choose the big scary outdoors!

    We finally found the 2 mothers late last night as it was getting dark, lying down on the freaking ground in some bushes together, I'm just praying that the babies were underneath them and they have all made it through the night.

    So my day today is going to be taken up with trying to catch the babies I guess without getting killed in the process [​IMG]

    I collected all the eggs up - yup, when shaking them, you could feel liquid in them - so I've dumped the lot of them.
     
  2. melroseladi

    melroseladi Chillin' With My Peeps

    744
    42
    143
    Mar 17, 2011
    Melrose, Florida
    I feel your pain and anger over the moms. I am going through a similar situation. My keets were in a dogloo dog house with mom. She came out into the pen, a couple keets made it out behind her. The rest would jump up to the ledge of the dogloo but would not make the jump down to the ground. Mom laid herself in front of the dogloo opening and called the keets to her. She made herself into a stepping stone for the keets until all of them had come out.

    I have a large dog carrier in the pen along with the dogloo. I have a perch in front of the dogloo so the keets can go in and out of it now at will. Where does mom roost with them? On the ground, not in the dog carrier or dogloo. We had a bad storm roll in and when I went out in the rain to check on them where is mom? On the ground with the keets under her getting soaking wet.

    Be careful of the other hen. My other hen was laying eggs in the nest while Sophia was setting on her eggs so I thought they would be alright together. Wrong assumption on my part. That other hen ate my only lavender keet. I couldn't get her to let it go and I couldn't get into the pen fast enough. I now have mom and keets separated from the others.
     
  3. robin416

    robin416 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 6, 2007
    This is where you have to adjust your thinking about Guineas. They did nothing wrong. They acted on instinct. Their instinct dictates that they have to be out foraging and on the move to avoid predation. Just because we provide them with a safe place to raise keets does not mean that can over ride the instinct for self preservation and we have to remember that or face this type of thing.

    All you have to think about is how strong and fast keets are within minutes of hatch. That is a means of survival for them in the wilds of Africa. Just because they were moved to a completely different climate does not reset that switch.
     
  4. BritinMO

    BritinMO Chillin' With My Peeps

    135
    0
    101
    Apr 18, 2011
    Good grief Melroseladi - what a story, thanks for sharing and letting me know I'm not the only one suffering right now!

    Well I opened the coop door this morning to let the 3 chickens out and spied the 2 mothers sitting underneath the horse trailer with some other other guineas (food is only in the coop) - so I held my breath as the guineas wandered out from under the trailer - and 2 babies tottered along behind..............so they have managed to loose one already [​IMG]

    But the 2 mothers wandered in the coop with the babies, with me following along behind armed with my plastic rake - and wham, I shut the door QUICK!

    Now the chickens are upset as they go in the coop to lay their eggs - but they are happily rummaging around in the hay barn looking for alternative spots - I found 2 chicken eggs the other day in the barn cat's bed - [​IMG]

    So now I'll figure out what to do next, if I can get the babies from the mothers that's what I am going to do, but boy those girls are fierce!
     
  5. melroseladi

    melroseladi Chillin' With My Peeps

    744
    42
    143
    Mar 17, 2011
    Melrose, Florida
    Oh maybe the other baby is just lost in the barn someplace. I had one that I thought was "taken" when I had done a head count the other day and I found it between the netting and fencing behind the dogloo. No clue how it managed to do that but I got it out and it was fine.

    Sophia isn't too bad with me BUT she will try to attack anybody and anything right through the chain link fencing, of course I haven't tried to get any of the keets away from her yet. When I go in the run to feed or water she does take them to the far corner but brings them right back as I put the food down. I am not sure how much longer I will be able to keep mine with mom. I am trying to let them stay with her as long as I possibly can. This morning they are enjoying digging in the wet dirt of the run after our long, hot dry spell.

    I am fortunate that I get to spend a lot of time out there so I do get to see a lot of their antics and I am amazed at how fast their little legs go to keep up with mom, and how they all come running to her when she calls them, and just how rough she is around them. I have noticed a few of them spending more time away from mom and going into the dogloo or carrier on their own.
     
  6. BritinMO

    BritinMO Chillin' With My Peeps

    135
    0
    101
    Apr 18, 2011
    Well I finally plucked up the courage to tackle catching the 2 babies with the help of a very brave neighbor, I lured the mothers out of the coop with babies following along behind and managed to shut the door as soon as the mad mothers went through it - and caught the 2 babies! The mothers went absolutely crazy, my neighbor and I were actually shut in the coop at one time scared to leave..........................it was SO funny. We finally braved opening the door and legging it to the barn with the babies in an ice cream container when the mothers rushed off in another direction.

    I put the 2 babies in the old water trough with feed, water and a heat lamp in a horse stall, within minutes the mad mothers sussed out where they were and came screeching into the barn at top speed, with us taking cover in the tack room................................another 2 friends turned up and wondered what on earth was going on with all these guineas acting like complete lunatics.

    All settled down after a while thank goodness - I just hope the mothers don't hold a grudge against me for taking their babies, I don't want to be fending off low flying screechers ever again! [​IMG]
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by