Friday, October 4, 2013

More Bird Woes

Oh, chickens, must we be so challenging?

Meet Stew.  I named her Stew as she was, under initial observation, a pest.  She has been the runt of every chicken flock we introduced her to, so much so that she was constantly bloody and half the size of the other chickens.  She came to us in bad condition, and we had not succeeded in making her life more pleasant.  Out of a desire to give her a decent life (and since she doesn't lay eggs, probably due to malnourishment), we decided to throw her in with the guinea fowl and allow her to free range.
Oh, the peace.  She can be a bit aggressive with our guinea "teens," but not a single guinea attacks her.  She's eating pounds of food, enjoying exploring, and her condition is improving.

We recently added a chicken friend to the guinea run.  This is Darkest Winter (long story).  She broke her leg during a coop move thanks to our aggressive chickens (we're a work in progress here, people).  In order to protect her from attacks, we moved her into the run attached to the guinea coop.  Since it was unused except for when we had to be absent from home, she could rest quietly, access food and water, and not be harassed.
She's much spunkier than when we first moved her in, as you can see from her being on her feet.  Maybe we should have splinted her leg, but my research showed people to be ambivalent on this task, and she was already quite distressed.  Splinting might have killed her.

I am hopeful that Darkest Winter will heal and return to the coop.  If not, she may stay with the guineas.  Only time will tell.

Until next time, remember, this is not paradise.  It's Purgatory Ranch.

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