Oh, Mama Nature can get ticked, once you open you mouth and say "I kinda think I understand this..."
Our avalanche of guinea eggs is down to- a trickle. Maybe.
Here's the actual daily numbers for the last 12 days; 8,6,9,7,9,7,8,9,7,7,4,4...?
Because. We've got a guinea hen, "setting". Right on top of the one and only nest they were laying in.
Now what? Well, two things; I've set up two other possible nest tub type thingies in the coop, though it makes it crowded; and put nest eggs in there. So far, no luck; and the nest eggs are often found 1 or 2 feet away from where I put them. And; it seems the other guineas are continuing to successfully add eggs to the clutch in the nest- though not the 7-9 we were seeing before.
I'm afraid I have reason to suspect the other eggs are going into "stolen" nests- hidden somewhere.
The female doing the real "setting" so far seems to always be a "royal purple" (what we have now are 6 lavender, 5 pearl, 4 purple). She is NOT on the nest all the time; but she has come back and started setting a couple times, after we found her off the nest. Maybe she's warming up?
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This is a really crappy photo, through the wire, so as not to get too close and spook her. She sometimes sits tight, and sometimes spooks, right now.
And I just saw a lavender; and the pearl below- hanging around the nest looking very suspicious. Or auspicious, perhaps. Yesterday when we first saw purple setting, I found she was only on 7 eggs; so I added 3 more fresh ones to make 10, which looked to me like enough to sit on. Our guinea eggs are really not that small.
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If you look really carefully under the pearl momma, you can count 9; (again, crummy photo- didn't want to use flash, so wound up with slow shutter) and in another, even worse photo, you can count 11; and it's pretty clear there are more hiding behind the bird.
All of which means- we have more to learn about managing guinea egg production- over the entire season, and integrating hatching some into it all.
I guess I'm not really surprised, or disappointed. But dang, it was nice when it all looked so simple.