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Tame guinea did a weird squat thing today

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
Hi All,

My tame guinea hen was a bit mean to a chicken today so I scolded her and put my hand firmly on her back to stop her.
She immediately went down to the ground with her wings stretched right out, her neck craned, head down in the sand and stayed completely still. I had the fright of my life!
When I let go she got up and ruffled her feathers.
Since then I gather that, in chickens at least, this is either (or both) a submissive gesture and she sees me as alpha, or she is becoming ready to lay eggs. She is exactly one year and one day old, and has never laid an egg.
Thing is, what she did looks quite different to what i can find picture and video wise of chickens squatting, which looks like a very quick moment before the chicken gets up again. It might be particular to guineas, no idea.

Anyone have any experience with this?

I'm hoping that if this is submission, I can use it to my advantage to try and control her mean streak with some if the chickens, but I'm not much of a controlling type, lol! Plus I Need to integrate 2 chicks into the (small, 3 chickens, one guinea) flock soonish, and am concerned that she might harm them.

Is it actually possible to control birds, (train/discipline them somehow) or do they just do their own thing on instinct?
post #2 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kalimani View Post

Hi All,

My tame guinea hen was a bit mean to a chicken today so I scolded her and put my hand firmly on her back to stop her.
She immediately went down to the ground with her wings stretched right out, her neck craned, head down in the sand and stayed completely still. I had the fright of my life!
When I let go she got up and ruffled her feathers.
Since then I gather that, in chickens at least, this is either (or both) a submissive gesture and she sees me as alpha, or she is becoming ready to lay eggs. She is exactly one year and one day old, and has never laid an egg.
Thing is, what she did looks quite different to what i can find picture and video wise of chickens squatting, which looks like a very quick moment before the chicken gets up again. It might be particular to guineas, no idea.

Anyone have any experience with this?

I'm hoping that if this is submission, I can use it to my advantage to try and control her mean streak with some if the chickens, but I'm not much of a controlling type, lol! Plus I Need to integrate 2 chicks into the (small, 3 chickens, one guinea) flock soonish, and am concerned that she might harm them.

Is it actually possible to control birds, (train/discipline them somehow) or do they just do their own thing on instinct?


She was submitting but not because of a domination thing.  She was prepared to mate. 

 

Guineas are a flock bird.  In my opinion the best thing for your guinea is to rehome her to a place where she can be with a lot more guineas.  She is not a chicken and will never develop the same attitudes as chickens have.

 

Guineas are somewhat trainable but you can't train away the habits that are natural to them.  You can train them to come when called or to a particular sound (bell, etc.) by using treats.  They can be trained to stay inside a fenced area pretty well.  They can be trained to go in a coop for the night.  They cannot be trained to not pull feathers and some of their other traits that other poultry find annoying.

 

Her "mean streak" is natural guinea behavior especially since mating season is fast approaching if not already here.

 

Once the daylight hours get long enough she will begin laying eggs.

 

Good luck.

Welsummers, mixed breed chickens, Blue Slate turkeys, Sweetgrass turkeys and guineas.

In wonderful Wyoming.

Bob

 

My photo album

Reply

Welsummers, mixed breed chickens, Blue Slate turkeys, Sweetgrass turkeys and guineas.

In wonderful Wyoming.

Bob

 

My photo album

Reply
post #3 of 7
Thread Starter 
Thanks for your reply. I'M not sure where Wyoming is relative to Cape Town, in terms of weather conditions. There are a lot of wild guineas around, including her brother, who is viciously attacking anyone who gets too close to the babies. She has no interest, she might even be afraid of them.
post #4 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kalimani View Post

Thanks for your reply. I'M not sure where Wyoming is relative to Cape Town, in terms of weather conditions. There are a lot of wild guineas around, including her brother, who is viciously attacking anyone who gets too close to the babies. She has no interest, she might even be afraid of them.


Wyoming is in the United States which is a very great distance from Capetown.  There are no wild guineas around here and we are just entering breeding season.  My guineas are just now starting the chases and won't be starting to lay for about 2 more months.

 

Good luck.

Welsummers, mixed breed chickens, Blue Slate turkeys, Sweetgrass turkeys and guineas.

In wonderful Wyoming.

Bob

 

My photo album

Reply

Welsummers, mixed breed chickens, Blue Slate turkeys, Sweetgrass turkeys and guineas.

In wonderful Wyoming.

Bob

 

My photo album

Reply
post #5 of 7
Thread Starter 
Oops, I meant to say in terms of seasons, not weather conditions! It's the end of summer here, and of course all of the US is the other way round. So our daylight hours are in fact decreasing, albeit slowly, and we do not have very extreme changes in season here. That could explain why we have about 12 newborn wild guineas running around here at this time of the year. And perhaps explain why my girl is suddenly behaving like this. A bit of a late bloomer?

Do you think this behaviour will continue past mating season? Assuming she will not get pregnant. Is that even the right term for birds?
post #6 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kalimani View Post

Oops, I meant to say in terms of seasons, not weather conditions! It's the end of summer here, and of course all of the US is the other way round. So our daylight hours are in fact decreasing, albeit slowly, and we do not have very extreme changes in season here. That could explain why we have about 12 newborn wild guineas running around here at this time of the year. And perhaps explain why my girl is suddenly behaving like this. A bit of a late bloomer?

Do you think this behaviour will continue past mating season? Assuming she will not get pregnant. Is that even the right term for birds?


You may want to join the Guinea Fowl International forum.  As I recall there was a member from South Africa posting on there.  I remember that she would have young keets during your fall.

 

http://guineas.com/forum/index.php?mode=index

 

Good luck.

Welsummers, mixed breed chickens, Blue Slate turkeys, Sweetgrass turkeys and guineas.

In wonderful Wyoming.

Bob

 

My photo album

Reply

Welsummers, mixed breed chickens, Blue Slate turkeys, Sweetgrass turkeys and guineas.

In wonderful Wyoming.

Bob

 

My photo album

Reply
post #7 of 7
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by R2elk View Post


You may want to join the Guinea Fowl International forum.  As I recall there was a member from South Africa posting on there.  I remember that she would have young keets during your fall.

http://guineas.com/forum/index.php?mode=index

Good luck.


Thank you so much, I can see myself going down the 'wormhole' over there!
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