We have babies!

Mixed flock enthusiast

Free Ranging
May 21, 2018
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Stillwater, OK
I was so excited to find someone in Oklahoma who breeds fancy colored guinea fowl. So, 27 days ago, I set 27 of his eggs in the incubator. This was a week after a hen (Violet) conveniently went broody on a nest in my coop. The day I set the eggs, another hen, Welch, just happened to join Violet on the nest. Two weeks after that, Violet abandoned the nest (why? Chased off by more dominant Welch or just quit?) and only Welch remained. Welch is the bird that hatched and raised keets last year, so that was fine by me, though I’m sad for Violet who has tried very seriously this year to incubate a nest.

Also two weeks ago, I was afraid that Welch’s eggs would be close to hatching, so I’ve chased her off twice to take developed eggs and swap in the eggs I wanted her to hatch. Last weekend, Violet’s original eggs started to hatch in my incubator - I think I’m up to 18 keets in my brooder with four more eggs still cooking/hatching.

My excitement today though is that Welch has keets! I think at least 9 of the 19 fancy eggs that I gave her have now hatched. Her consort, Hamlet, has even come back to attend her. Hamlet was the most devoted cock I’ve had while his mate was incubating. He stayed by her for two weeks, then gave her up for another hen, which is par for the course for my guys. But he was staying with her this afternoon and his “new hen” now has herself a new beau. I’m hopeful I’ll finally have a dad taking an active role in keet rearing.

I snapped a quick pic of Welch and her babies in the nest box. Welch wasn’t too upset when I peeked, and she even let me help a wayward baby back into the box. She really hated the camera though! These eggs were from Pinto Royal Purple and Violet breeding pens. So far I’m seeing white, royal purple, pinto RP, and Violet/Pastel keets!!!
 

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Sydney65

Crowing
Aug 2, 2019
1,401
2,940
266
Indiana
I was so excited to find someone in Oklahoma who breeds fancy colored guinea fowl. So, 27 days ago, I set 27 of his eggs in the incubator. This was a week after a hen (Violet) conveniently went broody on a nest in my coop. The day I set the eggs, another hen, Welch, just happened to join Violet on the nest. Two weeks after that, Violet abandoned the nest (why? Chased off by more dominant Welch or just quit?) and only Welch remained. Welch is the bird that hatched and raised keets last year, so that was fine by me, though I’m sad for Violet who has tried very seriously this year to incubate a nest.

Also two weeks ago, I was afraid that Welch’s eggs would be close to hatching, so I’ve chased her off twice to take developed eggs and swap in the eggs I wanted her to hatch. Last weekend, Violet’s original eggs started to hatch in my incubator - I think I’m up to 18 keets in my brooder with four more eggs still cooking/hatching.

My excitement today though is that Welch has keets! I think at least 9 of the 19 fancy eggs that I gave her have now hatched. Her consort, Hamlet, has even come back to attend her. Hamlet was the most devoted cock I’ve had while his mate was incubating. He stayed by her for two weeks, then gave her up for another hen, which is par for the course for my guys. But he was staying with her this afternoon and his “new hen” now has herself a new beau. I’m hopeful I’ll finally have a dad taking an active role in keet rearing.

I snapped a quick pic of Welch and her babies in the nest box. Welch wasn’t too upset when I peeked, and she even let me help a wayward baby back into the box. She really hated the camera though! These eggs were from Pinto Royal Purple and Violet breeding pens. So far I’m seeing white, royal purple, pinto RP, and Violet/Pastel keets!!!
BABIES!!!:wee:celebrate:th
Fingers crossed we both close the season with success!
 

Sydney65

Crowing
Aug 2, 2019
1,401
2,940
266
Indiana
I was so excited to find someone in Oklahoma who breeds fancy colored guinea fowl. So, 27 days ago, I set 27 of his eggs in the incubator. This was a week after a hen (Violet) conveniently went broody on a nest in my coop. The day I set the eggs, another hen, Welch, just happened to join Violet on the nest. Two weeks after that, Violet abandoned the nest (why? Chased off by more dominant Welch or just quit?) and only Welch remained. Welch is the bird that hatched and raised keets last year, so that was fine by me, though I’m sad for Violet who has tried very seriously this year to incubate a nest.

Also two weeks ago, I was afraid that Welch’s eggs would be close to hatching, so I’ve chased her off twice to take developed eggs and swap in the eggs I wanted her to hatch. Last weekend, Violet’s original eggs started to hatch in my incubator - I think I’m up to 18 keets in my brooder with four more eggs still cooking/hatching.

My excitement today though is that Welch has keets! I think at least 9 of the 19 fancy eggs that I gave her have now hatched. Her consort, Hamlet, has even come back to attend her. Hamlet was the most devoted cock I’ve had while his mate was incubating. He stayed by her for two weeks, then gave her up for another hen, which is par for the course for my guys. But he was staying with her this afternoon and his “new hen” now has herself a new beau. I’m hopeful I’ll finally have a dad taking an active role in keet rearing.

I snapped a quick pic of Welch and her babies in the nest box. Welch wasn’t too upset when I peeked, and she even let me help a wayward baby back into the box. She really hated the camera though! These eggs were from Pinto Royal Purple and Violet breeding pens. So far I’m seeing white, royal purple, pinto RP, and Violet/Pastel keets!!!
These are so adorable- the faces remind me of penguins. I haven't taken pics of Rosie's; one I couldn't get them to sit still long enough, & 2, it's kind of pointless if the coloring isn't picked up so I end up saying, "yes, the pic looks dark, but really, she's creamy colored!". Lol.
Some of "Rosie's" - I knew Bella had put eggs in there, but not how many. None of them are creamy colored, but as I watch them mature, some have dark grey feathers & some seem more of a dark brown. Not sure if it makes a diff in the end or not but waiting to see. A few are almost as big as my 6 week old. Not quite, but enough to require a second look, so guessing those are my jumbos.
 

Mixed flock enthusiast

Free Ranging
May 21, 2018
3,712
9,010
676
Stillwater, OK
Update 9/12: in the interest of not painting an overly rosy picture of broody guinea hatches, I’m going to share the following painful update. I went back and read through my previous posts about Welch’s hatch last year and was reminded that it didn’t actually go all that smoothly, it was just much better than my previous broody hatches. This year is worse because I made a critical and stupid mistake this morning.

Backing up, I started with 27 eggs in the incubator, but ended up putting 19 developing eggs under the guinea hen, some at 2 weeks and some at three weeks. Of those, 12 hatched, one partially zipped and died, and six were dead in shell. Welch’s mate, Hamlet, had become very attentive to Welch during the hatching process, and I had high hopes he’d help with the keets. Yesterday though, I saw him being very rough with the newly hatched keets and pecking at them, so I kicked him out of the coop. Unfortunately, Welch did not intervene plus desperately wants to get to Hamlet who is waiting outside the coop, so she is pacing and stepping on keets in the process. She was a pacer last year too, but I think the keets eventually stopped following her around and just hung out nearby while she paced. This year the keets keep trying to follow her…

I went out near dawn this morning to get all adults out so they wouldn’t harm keets. I have an auto door and am so mad at myself for forgetting it was set for 8 AM, so even though I left the auto door closed at 7:15, when I went out at 11 AM to check on things, I saw that the auto door was open. My heart sank and I was so sad to find one dead keet and two injured keets, with Hamlet back to being outside looking in and Welch very upset. I suspect that Hamlet went in and killed/ injured the keets.

My brooder is full of keets I’m trying to sell, so I put the two injured keets in my incubator with food and electrolytes. Unfortunately, both keets are super stressed and constantly calling for mom, so I don’t know if they’ll eat or drink away from her. One of the keets is probably ok to put back with mom, but the other is injured in some way I can’t see, and I doubt he will make it.
 

Sydney65

Crowing
Aug 2, 2019
1,401
2,940
266
Indiana
Update 9/12: in the interest of not painting an overly rosy picture of broody guinea hatches, I’m going to share the following painful update. I went back and read through my previous posts about Welch’s hatch last year and was reminded that it didn’t actually go all that smoothly, it was just much better than my previous broody hatches. This year is worse because I made a critical and stupid mistake this morning.

Backing up, I started with 27 eggs in the incubator, but ended up putting 19 developing eggs under the guinea hen, some at 2 weeks and some at three weeks. Of those, 12 hatched, one partially zipped and died, and six were dead in shell. Welch’s mate, Hamlet, had become very attentive to Welch during the hatching process, and I had high hopes he’d help with the keets. Yesterday though, I saw him being very rough with the newly hatched keets and pecking at them, so I kicked him out of the coop. Unfortunately, Welch did not intervene plus desperately wants to get to Hamlet who is waiting outside the coop, so she is pacing and stepping on keets in the process. She was a pacer last year too, but I think the keets eventually stopped following her around and just hung out nearby while she paced. This year the keets keep trying to follow her…

I went out near dawn this morning to get all adults out so they wouldn’t harm keets. I have an auto door and am so mad at myself for forgetting it was set for 8 AM, so even though I left the auto door closed at 7:15, when I went out at 11 AM to check on things, I saw that the auto door was open. My heart sank and I was so sad to find one dead keet and two injured keets, with Hamlet back to being outside looking in and Welch very upset. I suspect that Hamlet went in and killed/ injured the keets.

My brooder is full of keets I’m trying to sell, so I put the two injured keets in my incubator with food and electrolytes. Unfortunately, both keets are super stressed and constantly calling for mom, so I don’t know if they’ll eat or drink away from her. One of the keets is probably ok to put back with mom, but the other is injured in some way I can’t see, and I doubt he will make it.
Aw, I'm so sorry. I was lucky, both the boys practiced with the ones I incubated, stepped up with her hatch & were really good at it. I'd give up the 21 to have those two back, but have no doubt that whatever happened, they tried to protect the keets with them.
She's much more stressed now, likewise with the pacing and stepping on her keets. She was the one that kept going back to her sister's nest for a long time, so I'm sure she's still mourning them. Fortunately they are older & though I know it hurts and scares them, no harm done and they're learning to stay out of her way when she starts pacing. She's gotten used to me being near by and yells at me now when I walk away.lol. I'm not sure if it's bc I'm the helper or another keet. Lol.
I wish I understood guinea talk, bc whatever she is saying, they come running, line up in rows like a classroom, sit down, heads up, staring right at her while she continues scolding.
Try putting a stuffed animal with the babies, maybe even attaching some feathers to it. I had a band of feathers that wrapped around the warmer, and it seemed to calm my 1st crew when it was on.
Rosie is mean to my 6 week old and the poor little guy still tries to snuggle with her and stay close.:hugs
 

Mixed flock enthusiast

Free Ranging
May 21, 2018
3,712
9,010
676
Stillwater, OK
Aw, I'm so sorry. I was lucky, both the boys practiced with the ones I incubated, stepped up with her hatch & were really good at it. I'd give up the 21 to have those two back, but have no doubt that whatever happened, they tried to protect the keets with them.
She's much more stressed now, likewise with the pacing and stepping on her keets. She was the one that kept going back to her sister's nest for a long time, so I'm sure she's still mourning them. Fortunately they are older & though I know it hurts and scares them, no harm done and they're learning to stay out of her way when she starts pacing. She's gotten used to me being near by and yells at me now when I walk away.lol. I'm not sure if it's bc I'm the helper or another keet. Lol.
I wish I understood guinea talk, bc whatever she is saying, they come running, line up in rows like a classroom, sit down, heads up, staring right at her while she continues scolding.
Try putting a stuffed animal with the babies, maybe even attaching some feathers to it. I had a band of feathers that wrapped around the warmer, and it seemed to calm my 1st crew when it was on.
Rosie is mean to my 6 week old and the poor little guy still tries to snuggle with her and stay close.:hugs
I’m struggling with whether to intervene more or not… Mom is stressed and tightly wound, so I’m afraid that anything I add will just freak her out more. If the keets call out, then she does still sit down with them and give them a quick warmer. It’s a good think Oklahoma is still pretty hot, but cooler in the mornings now.

I’m not sure why, but I think she’s more stressed and nervous as a mom than last year. That surprises me as I would have thought she’d be a more competent and confident mom now. She’s also doing poorly at keeping the other adults off the keets; she was much more protective last year. This year the other adults keep trying to peck the keets and Welch doesn’t pay much attention. I have to get the adults out at dawn and in at dusk so they don’t have time to hurt the keets. This a big freak out session with Welch and keets also trying to get out the open door with all of these adults, who are figuring out now that I’m going to lock them out all day and don’t really want to leave so early!:barnie

Clearly I need to change something before I try this again next year, but I’m not sure what. So far, each hen that has hatched keets does this nervous pacing thing, so I feel creating a fenced off space will be more dangerous to the keets because of the pacing. Maybe if I have a fenced off space for Mom and keets, plus I locked up much of the flock around her, then the hen won’t feel compelled to leave the coop to join the flock, with resulting anxious pacing. That will require finishing the run, which I’m about 1/3 done with.

Anyway, I’ve put two different food/water platforms in the run so keets have food and water at either end of the coop if Welch is pacing. I can see on the camera that they spend a fair amount of time on these platforms but are still perilously close to her feet…

One bit of good news, I was able to put one keet back with Welch yesterday and the other keet is looking better! The more injured keet seemed to have a leg injury, but I couldn’t feel a break. It almost seemed like spraddle leg, but I was afraid to band it together and decided to give it more time in the incubator with a recent hatched keet from my brooder for company. The brooder keet is eating and drinking and mostly helpful. This morning, the injured keet was able to stand on the leg and interested in food! :clap I had planned to put the injured keet in the brooder, but he’s constantly calling for mom now that he’s better. I’m giving him more time to recover but am still leaning towards keeping him permanently out of the pen with Welch… I did take a few pics so am sharing. The one I’m holding is the less injured keet that rejoined Welch yesterday. I’m thinking that one is pastel and the similar colored keets with darker caps are Violet. They are taken in different lights though, so I could be mistaken.
 

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Sydney65

Crowing
Aug 2, 2019
1,401
2,940
266
Indiana
Aw, so jealous sitting here with my monsters. Lol. I meant put the feathered whatever in with the injured keet to simulate Welch. This is what I had, to give you an idea. https://rentacoop.com/products/comf...hRqBiLW2lDSsJboA2tlF12ox3vhqTR8BoCUMcQAvD_BwE
Even a handful of feathers attached to a piece of cloth to get under.
This year I've just been using the heating pad arched over the perch I have screwed into side of brooder, and have fuzzy cover on it that I can wash. They've loved that. They curl up in the fuzzy for comfort, and when we would be decreasing the temp on a warmer, they can move away from the "walls" to the center of the arch or get ontop. But they can't get trapped inside or in folds.
Mb your littles could be in a box that's short enough for Welch to get out of but tall enough that they can't? Then she could come and go. We found 3 of Rosie's dead at hatch;they were on bottom, so think they hatched first & then she must have stepped on, or were suffocated by the pile on. 2 were completely hatched. The other had zipped and had the cap off, but it's bum was still in the shell.
 

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