And so, each time I set out to do a task around the farm I try to keep a presence of mind and make safety, both for me and the animals, a priority. And still, occasionally, things go awry.
Case in point.... The other morning I was feeding our young guinea brood. Their current home is in the chicken tractor (basically a large low-lying chicken wire pen that can be moved from one location to another). I slid the piece of wood to the side to access their feed but could not stretch my arm far enough to reach their water trough. So I moved around to the side of the pen and reached a stick through the wire and tried to slide the trough closer to the opening....not realizing that I had left the door to the tractor wide open. In a split second, 16 young guinea fowl saw their great fortune and ran for freedom! What can go wrong will go wrong!
Well, the guineas have survived one week now of living on their own. They spend their days combing our acreage, eating bugs and squawking like mad. At night they return to the area that was their last home. They roost on the fence, by the horses, that is next to their chicken tractor. And in the morning, they are once again off and running. They have not joined forces with our 6 remaining "old" guineas, but rather, stay segregated. At least they survived their early release!