Guinea keets have to be kept at 95ºF for their first weeks, until they have enough feathers to keep themselves warm. For the first few days you can keep them indoors without too much work, but after that they get annoyingly stinky and you spend all your time cleaning up after them. Fortunately, here in south-central Texas, 95º is pretty simple to accomplish outdoors, and I also had the motivation of teaching our 5 dogs to leave them alone before they’re old enough to be released.
So a few days ago I moved them outside, using an old cage I found down at the “wild” end of the house, a cardboard box, and a heat lamp and extension cord for the “low” nighttime temps when it drops 'way down into the high 70s.
The dogs have been doing a pretty good job of learning to ignore them, and the keets are having a good old time eating new stuff like worms and chickweed from the garden, and the house doesn’t smell like keet poop. Win-win!
So naturally, now that I have them all settled in (and in the process put my back out hauling dirt to fill in the bottom of the cage so they don’t break any legs), our endlessly hot and sunny weather is coming to an abrupt end later today, and the forecast for the foreseeable future is filled with rain, rain, and more rain. Oops.
So, as usual, Glowforge to the rescue! Late last night I threw together a wooden “house” to replace the cardboard, and hastily gave it several coats of tung oil to get it through the few weeks left until they won’t need it any more. That and a tarp should get them through the rainy period – now I just need to construct a feeder to keep their food dry, and we’ll be all set.