The reason this turkeyish creature looks so lost and alone is because it is a guinnea fowl and it has temporarily misplaced its group of other guinnea fowl. The other reason it looks so lost and alone is because it has a very small brain and, possibly, very poor eyesight too, because the rest of the guinneas are less than a metre outside the frame of this photo.
But these were the birds that Husband first chose to add a bit of aesthetic interest to our garden and to our lives and, yes, I like them too, but, of all the birds, they are the least approachable, the most noisy and the stupidest. A good example of the latter is that if anyone is driving up (or down) the driveway and the guinneas are pecking away at the gravel, no amount of tooting the horn, or revving the engine, will get them to move. They might come up to the front of your vehicle and stare absently at the licence plate, perhaps nibble a few dead bugs off the fenders but they will NOT get out of the way!
Some mornings, I actually have to get out of the car or the ute and shoo them away before I can even get to the front gate to go to the local shop to get the newspaper, milk and fresh bread.
I try to love these guinneas as much as I love the other birds, but it’s hard because they are so thick! And they don’t love me back the way the other birds do; they just glance at me occasionally. Their indifference to me is quite hurtful.
“But they look so lovely on the lawns, Jules,” Husband says fondly (not fondly to me, fondly of them). This is usually when I go in and grab a wine before I trudge back down the long, long driveway to fetch the vehicle that the guinneas have once against trapped. Argh!
On the other hand, it’s just occurred to me that, as a group, they might be quite useful to the police if a blockade were required to deter a runaway criminal. Yes – this could work. I’ll ring the cops now and see what they think. We have 15 guinneas so they could probably do it in shifts of five.
I guess I better check with Husband first; he might not approve.