A mystery solved

You may recall that I’ve been blaming jackdaws for knocking bird feeders down and then eating the contents.

Well, it seems there is another possibility. They may have been knocking the feeders down but I now have another avian candidate for the emptying of the feeders.

Look at the photos of these two suspicious characters mopping up spilt food and all will become clear.


Suspicious characters lurking under the bird feeders

They need to be careful, because unlike jackdaws, they taste nice when roasted and people are always asking about them at Christmas…

8 thoughts on “A mystery solved

  1. James Gielow

    Lovely little devils. I’m getting four next week once they hatch. What tips can you give me as I only have chicken experience.

    I’ve heard that they make quite the racket and cannot be contained.

    Also, is it true that they’ll leave my garden unscathed?

    1. quercuscommunity

      Where to start?

      I’ve always found them great in the garden – eating pests and leaving the plants alone, with the additional benefit of leaving small amounts of organic matter dotted around the place.

      We’ve had neighbours complain about them lifting onion sets and raking over newly seeded ground but everything lifts onion sets and he didn’t actually see them do it. They may have been guilty of the other charge but but all that new earth must have been a temptation and I’m not sure they were after the seeds.

      They are very vocal, to the extent that they will fly to the top of one of the barns and launch a lengthy verbal attack on rivals. However, if you are keeping them as guards they are louder and less aggressive than geese.

      We have kept them inside (you need to if you want the eggs) but they like it outside and will always find a way out unless your housing is very secure.

      They will range freely and you may not always know where they are – several of ours actually just wandered in and stayed. We only had greys – the whites and the black one just appeared at various times.

      The main difference with them compared to chickens is that guinea fowl make chickens look like intellectual giants. Watch them when you get a pair on opposite sides of a fence. They get very agitated and the one that flew over seems to forget how it got there.

      My life would be a lot less interesting without them. 😉

      1. James Gielow

        Haha, I never thought there was ever any creature on this green earth that could be dumber than a chicken!! This I must see!

        Thanks for all the info, this is what I’ve been hearing. Mine will not be locked in at all and I expect them to be terrorizing the entire block. I’m in an urban environment, and I’m sure my neighbors will love me after this!

        I’m after three things with these guys, pest control, predator alarm system and entertainment.

        I’m always out in the yard digging around, so I’m sure I’ll find one or two eggs now and again. But it’s okay if I don’t.

        Worse case scenario is I eat them. Which I’m not sure I have the strength to do yet. Never was a 4H or farm guy so I lack the strength to eat “pets”. It is an important part of husbandry that I need to get over.

        I had to put down a rooster last year and I’m still recovering from the emotional scarring from that violent act.

        I know, I know, stupid city boy.

Leave a Reply