Acquired: Breeder (non-professional, hobby breeder)
Virginia, United States
Posted Oct 21, 2014
Back when I was first getting Guinea Fowl for tick control, I bought a few from a friend who was a hobby breeder who had all colors of guineas and all kinds of chickens on his farm. I especially wanted a few of the white pearl guineas to add to my flock, so he promised to watch for any pure white babies.
Several weeks later my farmer friend called me and said he had a white guinea keet for me if I wanted it. I went right over and fell in love with the tiny white bit of fluff and took it home with me. I put it in the brooder where it was warm, but it seemed lonely so I often carried it around in my pocket when I could. I even took it to work with me a couple of times. Finally I brought in a baby guinea that had just hatched from one of our pearl guineas outdoors, to keep it company and they both seemed happy. I named them Chirpy and Smidgeon.
However a few weeks after bringing Chirpy home from the farmers house, I noticed that she did not look quite the same shape of head as my other baby guinea. Several weeks after that she began to get some tiny black flecks on her back and I called my friend to ask exactly what kind of bird he had sold me. I had very little experience with chickens at the time and so when my friend began to laugh and told me he was sorry to have mistakenly sold me a baby chicken I was a bit chagrined.
My little white flecked bird was indeed a full fledged Delaware Chicken who had hatched out with the baby guineas. Even though I could have taken her back, I was too attached to Chirpy by that time. I was raising her and Smidgeon in the house and they were adorable little pets. They would roost on my chair and shoulder and fly around and come back to my arm to be petted.
Chirpy was the best pet chicken I have ever had. I loved that bird! As she grew and went outside to live with the guineas, she began to lay lovely big brown eggs and would always come running and hop up on my knee to get treats. She was a nice big hen with such a sweet disposition and beautiful markings......a great all round chicken.
I have not met anyone near us that raised Delawares in recent years........but now that I am keeping chickens again I will certainly get more of that wonderful breed if I have the opportunity!