The Cottage Smallholder


stumbling self sufficiency in a small space

Update on the Farming Friends – Cottage Smallholder Interblog Guinea Fowl Event. One wife and a handful of husbands.

Carol averts possible liasonIt seems ages since Sara at Farming Friends sent us six guinea fowl eggs in the post. June 2007 saw the launch of the Farming Friends’ – Cottage Smallholder’s Interblog Guinea Fowl Event. Now the guinea fowl have grown up and I must admit I have fallen in love with these gentle creatures.

A couple of weeks ago I went down to clean out the chicken house. Carol (our Roman Empress Maran hen) was looking a bit rumpled and was clearly rattled. She was squeezed on the roof of the chicken house – there is just enough space for her to stand under the netted top of the run if she bobs down. As I swept out the dormitory and replaced the hay in the nesting box she clucked. A staccato tattoo, with her head very close to mine. It was clear from the tone that this was not a reassuring, “Thanks for cleaning out our house” sort of chortle. She kept on and on – clearly agitated and hugely disgruntled.

When I was looking in the storage bins for the red mite powder I heard her thunder past, pursued by an elegant guinea fowl cock. A male on a mission who clearly had not boned up on the delicacies of courtly love. Wildly attracted to the strongest, largest hen in the pen he had forgotten the importance of canoodling – and was just attempting to jump on board.

Carol, was not amused. Suddenly I understood the roof top scenario and was impressed by her intelligence. If she stands on the hen house roof there is not even the space for a flea to land on her back.

We have a problem. Our four guinea fowl have finally matured and discovered a yearning to propagate. I hoped that we had two pairs and all would be well as they would probably settle into guinea fowl domestic bliss. A couple of months ago I realised that we have a lone female, Cloud, and three hot blooded suitors. One only has eyes for Carol and the other two fight on and off for Cloud who shimmies about the run and is clearly testing out all possible husbands to be.

We have discussed the problem at length. We don’t have a big enough run to breed more guinea fowl and hope that there will be new princesses for the single males in the future. The fighting cannot continue, Cloud needs just one mate. Carol is being harassed and as she is the only hen that’s laying at the moment we want her to have a good time with minimum stress.

We have two options:

Kill and eat two male guinea fowl
Give two male guinea fowl away

Danny baulks at the first proposal, at the moment, and gives the second the thumbs up.
“Even if they were collected to be eaten in the future, I wouldn’t mind as I wouldn’t know.” He also added, “How would we know if Cloud is left with Prince Charming and not the one with goofy teeth – they all look the same to us?”

We have two gentle male guinea fowl that need a new home. Hopefully a home with lonely female guineas that need an occasional cuddle.

If you are interested in giving a home to two free guinea fowl, possibly with goofy teeth, email us through the contact us page. We are based in Cambridgeshire on the Suffolk/Cambs border.

I wonder if this is the first guinea fowl dating agency on the internet?


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15 Comments

  1. Julia Simpson

    Hello Mrs Boss

    Thank you for your reply.

    I will keep my fingers crossed.

    Kind regards

    Julia

  2. Fiona Nevile

    Hi Julia

    I don’t know who Susie is! This is my site. We hatched the guinea fowl eggs under a broody hen – Mrs Boss.

    Unfortunately we only have one guinea fowl couple and no spare male guinea fowl ATM. Perhaps someone will happen upon your comment and all will be well.

  3. Julia Simpson

    Hi Susie,

    Would you be able to let me know if the eggs were originally hatched under a guinea or a hen? How friendly are they?

    I’m looking for a hadsome male to keep a lonely female (Poppy) company (she lost her partner Henry a couple of weeks ago and is pining)but I treat mine more like pets. Poppy has the freedom of a large garden during the day and a heated hutch during the night.

  4. Fiona Nevile

    Hello Susie,

    When they get going they are only silenced by a handful if Swiss Chard leaves! I love their chirrups when I pass their house at night, though.

  5. Vociferous .. oh, TELL me about it! Mine are never quiet until they’re shut up for the night .. and they’ve set themselves up in direct challenge to the geese in the “Guard Bird” stakes … who knew what a racket they could produce?!?

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