I don’t have the best hearing in the world, so when I watch TV after Chareva and the girls go to bed, I wear headphones. The advantage is that I can hear dialog, gunshots, explosions and other important parts of the story without straining. The disadvantage is that I don’t hear much of anything else.
Last night I finished watching a movie called Freelancers around midnight, then took off the headphones. As soon as I did, I was aware of what sounded like several coyotes having one hell of a fight in either our front yard or front pasture. Lots of what sounded like yelps of pain. I looked out the window but couldn’t see anything — when it’s dark in the country, it’s DARK.
When Chareva went to tend to the chickens today, she found that something had dug a hole under the fence that surrounds the chicken barn. Then she noticed a couple of feathers. Then she noticed that our last remaining guinea fowl, which we moved to the chicken yard after coyotes killed its nine flock-mates, was nowhere to be seen.
Later she found what remained of the guinea fowl:
She found those in the front yard. I took a picture from our front porch to show the distance from the house. The circle is where Chareva found the feathers. It’s also probably where coyote rumble occurred.
So I’m pretty sure a coyote got into the chicken yard and snatched the guinea fowl, then a small pack of coyotes fought over the booty.
We bought guinea fowl — one flock of 10, then another when the first flock disappeared — because we’d read that they’re tough, almost prehistoric fighters. They’ll swarm predators, according to articles on the internet. They’ll eat ticks. They’ll roost in the trees.
Well, not the ones we bought. They were, I’m sorry to say, quite obviously rather stupid. Not one managed to fly away from coyotes. The last remaining guinea fowl apparently didn’t even have the good sense to roost up high in the chicken barn, away from danger. The chickens did. They’re all still alive and well.
No more guinea fowl for us. I’m not buying birds to feed the local coyotes.