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December 6, 2012

Laid Low By a Guinea Murder

A sad find yesterday morning, friends. One of our guinea buddies was murdered.

You might want to either put down that breakfast bar or just skip over this next paragraph. You've been duly warned.

Talk about a determined kill. Whatever got our guinea had his work cut out for him - and we didn't hear a thing. The guineas roost up high in the turkey house in what we thought was a secure coop. The predator had to have gotten the guinea off his roost, out of the coop thru a whole he torn thru the chicken wire, and then across the turkey house.  We found the guinea's headless body by a small hole in the floor. This was a lot of work for one mean predator. We think its might have been a weasel or a mink.

I checked around and I found this fact sheet by the Oklahoma State University that gives an overview of the modus operandi of several common predators. Welp Hatchery also had a predator ID chart. Because just the head was eaten, and the hole in the floor wasn't very big, we think it was a mink. Someone also told us yesterday that they had seen a roadkill mink near their property. So this makes sense.

The dogs have been very interested in the turkey house lately and they went nuts when we showed them the hole to the outside. So they are on the job. However, we will probably have to set a box trap as the predator will probably just keep coming back.

Our next problem is that we have just one guinea. I'm not so sure he's going to be too happy by himself. We put him in with the chickens last nite. We'll see how that goes.

In the meantime, I'm pretty low about the loss of our guinea friend. We got the guineas at our first visit to a livestock auction. I was so excited I didn't ask one question about them - and I may have very well been bidding against the owner in his attempt to drive up the price! But we brought them home in a feed sack, our two old bachelor guineas, Bob and Roy.  Guineas are loud, funny, and ridiculous... but I sure like them.

I just turned the dogs out with instructions to "go and kill something." Hopefully they will bring me a mink so I can mount its head on a pike in the yard. And maybe make a hat.

Happy Thursday everyone. Keep a keen eye out for predators.