Problems as Mrs Psycho is driven by her instincts

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Parenthood has changed one of our banties from a mild mannered biddy to a psychopathic foul fowl.

It is not that she has been driven to excess by the desire to protect her own chicks.

They seem just as much at risk as the other groups of hens and their babies.

Today she has trampled two of her own chicks to death in a fit of aggression towards another bantam and caused one of her targets to also flatten one of their chicks in an effort to protect the rest.

Mrs Psycho is now incarcerated in a small coop with her remaining chicks.

But I am still concerned for their safety as she is so cross at this unjust imprisonment, that she is prancing around and threatening them all with being Exhibit A, B, C etc in a squashed chick exhibition.

In another run however the seemingly impossible has happened. A first for us anyway.

One of the guinea fowl has actually hatched out a clutch of keets.

Pip, our Labrador, had discovered this particular hen sitting in the midst of a tangle of nettles in what should be the vegetable garden.

Only weeds at the moment, although nettles are supposed to make a good soup.

John fetched up a coop and placed it around the guinea fowl and her eggs so that she was protected from any marauding foxes .

During the day we opened the coop up so that she could leave the nest for a walk and scratch around.

But when I checked the coop last night, she had disappeared and a number of broken eggs lay scattered in the nesting area.

I was devastated.. A fox must have found her and broken the eggs I thought. Not so.

A few yards away I spotted Mrs GF crouched on the ground in a clearly defensive and protective position.

A little keet peeped out from beneath her and I realised what had happened.


Whilst my local handyman ( i.e. John) constructed without a murmur of protest ( I lie) a proper run for the guinea fowl and her keets, I popped the coop back over her again to make sure the keets stayed safe.

Left to their own devices guinea fowl are notorious for trailing their chicks around and this would quickly prove fatal to them in wet grass whilst they were still tiny.

Guinea fowl are also not known for being good mothers and currently this new Mum is calling out plaintively to her friends and ignoring her babies.

The other guinea fowl are not helping matters by perching on top of the new run and encouraging her to come out to play and ignore her responsibilities.

If this frivolous attitude to motherhood persists she may live to regret it.

I shall put the keets under a heat lamp with another batch of keets that I hatched out in the incubator and her in the slow cooker.

Tough love rules round here. OK?