Yesterday I took a deep breath, and let the guineas out of the coop to free range. They didn't come out for over a half hour. I think they kept looking out the door, thinking "oh my, this just doesn't look right, where is our run???". They are so afraid of new things sometimes! But once I went in the coop and gently shoo'd them outside, they were ecstatic and took to their freedom quite well.
Too well, I thought. At one point, they went into the horse pasture, then headed due north along the fence, in front of the house, and when they got to the next corner, they headed due west. I feared they would never find their way back home!
I watched them from the kitchen window, and it appeared they were running away from home.... so I went outside, to the front of the house, and lo and behold, here they were, running quickly back towards the house! They must have realized, oh my goodness, we are awfully far from home, aren't we?!
the sky might be falling??
At any rate, I faced my fears as much as they probably faced theirs -- it's so hard to let go sometimes. I fear they might not come back to the coop at night, or that one of our cats will get one of them, or a stray dog might get them, etc., etc. I have to continually remind myself, these are not pets per se.... no, I got them for the main purpose of keeping our yard free of ticks and other yucky bugs. So now is definitely the season to introduce them to their new job. I must steel myself to the very real possibility that we could lose some of them to predators -- but it won't be because I didn't do everything possible to protect them, of course.
our lonely gal - the male is always chasing her away!
They are not free-ranging today, for three reasons -- I have to leave for work shortly, we have wind in the 35-40 mph range today, along with the threat of very severe storms this evening. I don't want to fuss with trying to get them indoors if the weather takes a drastic change at the last minute!
our male - showing off as males like to do!