If you're astute, you may have noticed that I didn't even mention chickens in my last post. Good observation, reader. I'll get to that today.
At last my guinea fowl experiment was down to one lone female. I was afraid to let her out after her mate was snatched by a predator in broad daylight, leaving her and her loud, lonely call in the pen all day. I asked my friend, who is a poultry expert, on what I should do. Get chickens, she suggested. So I said sure, I'll take four (she also raises and breeds them). The chickens showed up about a week later, and their presence did seem to calm the guinea hen. Now, there was a little pack of 4 chickens and a guinea fowl roaming the property again.
Every night, I put the birds in the pen. They had a house, too, but usually the guinea slept outside. I figured they were pretty safe. But one night, a fisher got in. Fishers are really ferocious weasel-like animals. They will kill other animals, eat parts of them, and then just leave the rest of the body as a trophy of sorts. Luckily, my husband heard the commotion the night the fisher got in, and scared it off, but not before it killed the guinea and one chicken. Since that night, I've only had chickens. I still have two out of the original four, and I got two more chickens at the beginning of this year.
Chickens are the best! They're happy to see me when I walk around the yard, they do a pretty good job keeping the tick population at bay, they lay beautiful eggs, mainly in the same spot every day, and they're so cute and funny! I think this poultry lesson says a lot about my personality. I wanted the guinea fowl because they were different---everyone seemed to have chickens, but guinea fowl were more unique (and there's a good reason for that, as I've learned!). I disregarded all of the advice about how loud and unpleasant the birds were and figured mine would be somehow better, more tolerable. At the end of all of this, I realized that I should've just started with chickens.