Lesson 680 – poor little Guineas

Guinea hens are *impossible* to take photos of. They are incredibly skittish and never stand still, not even for one moment.

This is the best picture I got of our two Guinea hens today.


Yeah, I know not the greatest. My photo was supposed to look something more like this:

guinea hens

I just couldn’t get those two to stay still.

Let’s face it, guinea hens are strange looking birds, they’re like a cross between a vulture, a chicken, a football, and a lizard. They don’t care about human interaction and do their own thing only when they choose. Our Guineas don’t have the slightest interest in being held, or even having a person near them.  They don’t come when called and run to back corners when you try to get near them.  A little anti-social, these birds are, let’s just hope they earn their keep this summer by eating our ticks.

Of course, the discussion on how strange Guinea hens look and act has prompted Marc, our resident chicken man (who freely admits that he can live a very full life without ever having another Guinea hen) to tell me that in his book, he thinks our birds look like the freaky Skekis from Jim Henson’s film: The Dark Crystal.


I see the resemblance. Poor little misfits of ours, definitely a face only a mother could love.

As an added bonus, here’s a youtube video of Skekis having dinner. See what Marc means?


1 Comment

Filed under All things chickens, Backyard Chickens, chicken care

One response to “Lesson 680 – poor little Guineas

  1. The process of offspring identifying a parent (so they can be fed, protected, and learn skills of their kind) is called “imprinting.” As a child, my parents had a “hobby farm” in Southern California, with poorly enclosed chickens and a pair of free range Muscovy (quackless) ducks. The chickens laid eggs everywhere, as did the duck, much to the irritation our neighbors. (Even though my mother had grown up on a “real” farm, my parents’ reach far exceeded their grasp.) A chicken laid an egg in the duck’s nest; the baby chick imprinted on the duck. As a nine-year-old boy (by definition, not very good), I awaited with naughty anticipation the first time the mama duck took the babies (including chick) for a swim. My expectations were frustrated; a weasel ate mama duck and all the babies before the “ugly duckling” had a chance to founder in the duck pondlet.

    Humans also “reverse” imprint on companion animals, and generalize their affection in strange ways. Forgive me for saying that your imprinting umbrella is very wide, now taking in guineau hens. (Perhaps a fowl only a mother could adore?) My wife imprinted on Dominique hens, then generalized to black sex-link hens. After saying the other day that the black hen laid easier to peel hard boiled eggs (I leave it to you to figure out what I really mean here), my wife said that she is going to stick to Dominiques from now on because they are so well camouflaged in comparison to the “blackies.” My wife’s style is never to ruffle feathers and never to stand out in a crowd; I hardly can let a day go by without ruffling feathers or calling attention to myself. Forty-seven years of marriage and counting; go figure.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s