Geese & Guineas - Update

I took a picture of the guinea egg clutch on April 3rd.  Then after I uploaded the pics to iPhoto, I printed out one so we could get an accurate count of how many eggs have been laid. I kept losing my place when I tried to count them in the coop, and the same thing happened when I tried to count them on my computer monitor!

62 eggs!!

Now our guinea hen has some help too.  Looks like one of the other guinea hens decided she needed assistance covering all those eggs.

It's going to be interesting to see how this all turns out.  My best estimate puts the hatch date around April 20.  One part of me wants to let the moms take care of everything, but then another part of me says they are in a small coop with other guineas, including 2 males, and I'm not sure how well the newborn keets might fare in that situation.  

So perhaps we'll get the brooder ready, and move the new keets as they hatch.  It would be easier to introduce them to food and water that way also.  

We'll need to find new homes for the keets ASAP.  Our coop space won't tolerate even 2 more birds.  We've been discussing our future coop options - either enlarging the current coop, or building a separate coop east of the house on an existing concrete pad near the horses and the shop.

On a somewhat related note, the two Canadian geese who were hanging around the last few weeks decided to set up their new home near our pond. Their nest is on a small peninsula that hubby started to build last fall when we rented a Bobcat over Labor Day weekend.

I didn't want to get too close and upset them, so here's the best photos I managed to get a few days ago, from the opposite side of the pond.  The male (see photo below) kept a close eye on me the whole time.

Sorry.... you'll have to click the photo to enlarge it!
The goose is laying her head down to hide from me.

Both times that I've visited the pond, this is what the male does.
He flattens himself to try to hide from us, all the while keeping an eye on us.

I wish them both the best of luck.  We have so many coyotes around here.  I've heard them howling a lot lately, or rather, the dogs have woke me up because they hear them howling first.

So all in all, the next few weeks should be interesting here on the ole homestead!