Are Guinea Fowl a reasonable replacement for chickens?

Discussion in 'Guinea Fowl' started by Ellie M, Jan 15, 2013.

  1. Ellie M

    Ellie M New Egg

    Dec 11, 2011
    I currently have chickens but may move to a piece of property that has a "no chickens" clause in the deed. Would the Guinea Fowl (or something else) be a decent replacement? Any advice, information, etc., (please be verbose!) would be appreciated. Thanks and have a great day!
  2. AlienChick

    AlienChick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 9, 2010
    Glasgow, KY
    If "no chickens" are allowed, I would assume that includes Guineas.
    Also, Guineas are *VERY* loud... so if you have neighbors, Guineas would not be best.
    Find out "why" the clause is there (noise, sanitation, zoning code, etc.) and you can determine the best workaround.
  3. Ellie M

    Ellie M New Egg

    Dec 11, 2011
    All it says is "no chickens" (not no fowl, no poultry, no birds, etc.) so if Guinea Fowl are as good as chickens I'm not too concerned about neighbors (none too close). If Guinea Fowl are called that and not chickens, that is a way around it, other than an expensive process to get the deed changed. So basically I just need to know if they can replace chickens, not necessarily if my neighbors will object.
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2013
  4. PeepsCA

    PeepsCA Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 28, 2011
    Big Oak Valley, CA
    Guinea Fowl are not chickens, or called chickens. As far as being "as good as chickens" that's debatable, depending on your expectations of them.

    Just to forewarn you, your neighbors most likely have that same clause in their deed and will eventually object... Guineas are excessively loud and they roam far, they do not do well penned full time.

    Once your neighbors object, your county objects, you get slapped with the clause, fines... etc etc. Then you have Guineas to re-home.
  5. JLeigh

    JLeigh Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 19, 2012
    North Georgia
    Are these Home Owners Association rules? But no matter, if zoning or deed or HOA excludes chickens and/or livestock, you'll lose the fight. Peeps and AlienChick are right - guineas are MUCH louder than chickens, they roam about 1/4 - 1/2 a mile from home and are strong flyers who will end up in a neighbor's yard four properties away because a leaf spooked them, and then scream their heads off because they're lost.

    Does your deed say anything about livestock?
  6. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member

    In Georgia, poultry and livestock are mentioned exclusive of one another, however, HOA covenants rule over state law. Trust me, if anyone objects to chickens, they'll definitely object to guinea fowl. Even if it says specifically "chickens", I bet you'll have some resistance. They are extremely loud and can fly as well as any large wild bird, so won't stay on your property.

    Are they "As good as chickens"? Depends on what you mean. They are nothing like chickens other than being an avian species. They lay seasonally, not all year long, and their eggs are rather small compared to most laying hens'. They are not fully a domesticated fowl. They act, think and sound nothing like chickens. That said, I love guineas and hope to have them again in the future, however, I live in a rural mountain area with no zoning against poultry, not even in my loosely covenanted subdivision.

    Take a listen to this recording and see what I mean about their calls:
  7. Ellie M

    Ellie M New Egg

    Dec 11, 2011
    It's in the deed. It's not part of a community, no HOA, etc. The deeds says no pigs or chickens. We are allowed to have horses (but only based on township laws, nothing is specified in the deed) so I would imagine, cows, but I would have to check the township laws. There are probably laws based on acreage. Maybe it would be worth it to have the deed changed but that might be very costly. The property is five acres, the next guy is 7, the guy behind me is 10 and the other side is a camp, but the noise would travel. Thanks for your answers. I'm not sure I would like guinea fowl eggs over chicken eggs anyway.
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2013
  8. Woofless

    Woofless Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 7, 2010
    If you've got plenty of time to spare, money to spend on bird housing not to mention the price of the birds/chicks/eggs themselves (some varieties are more affordable than others)....and it helps if you're a glutton for punishment, you could raise ornamental pheasants instead :D

    They're gorgeous, they're quiet, and their eggs are not THAT much smaller than a chicken's egg, though they don't lay as heavily (every other day or so) and are naturally seasonal layers....BUT, apparently, artificial light will extend their laying season just like it will a chicken....I didn't even know that until I recently asked the hatchery owner who sells us quail & chukar chicks....he said he's getting eggs right now from all gamebird species with just 14 hrs of light from a little 60 watt bulb. So you might be able to squeeze a few more eggs out if you do that. I've read 2 pheasant eggs = 1 chicken egg in baking, but when I scramble 'em up I find pheasant eggs to be more like 2/3 the size of an average chicken egg.

    They're nothing like raising chickens or even guinea....or even quail or partridge for that matter. BUT if you are keeping a small flock, or a few pairs in individual pens, you are far less likely to encounter the problems that can arise in large-scale pheasant production where you are housing many birds in one place and trying to keep them from tearing each other to pieces :) I raise quail and chukar on a large scale, have thought of doing pheasants but everything I know about it scares me a little bit, quail are a piece of cake by comparison. BUT a few years back we had just a couple regular Ringneck roosters and a few hens, in two seperate places, one rooster per pen with his those were virtually trouble-free and I think they all lived to be 6 or 7 years old or more. I'd love to have a few pairs of ornamentals if I had the space for extra pens :)
  9. Trefoil

    Trefoil Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 7, 2011
    Guineas can be pretty good egg layers. I'm not sure their eggs taste much different than real chicken eggs. They are about the size of a medium chicken egg. How about ducks or geese? I thought I would NEVER have muscovies, but ended up getting a pair and they were sooo friendly, I now have 6. The thing about guineas or ducks, they are both insect predators which is really helpful if you live in a mosquito zone and like to be outside. Ducks or geese are easier to house and contain. Geese eat weeds/grass
    I'm not sure about the legalities of putting that kind of restriction in a deed, if its legal it may be really hard to change, but the good side is that it is so specific that I don't think it could be extended to mean any kind of poultry.
  10. tomingreeneco

    tomingreeneco Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 29, 2010
    Greene County, PA
    I would second the idea of getting ducks instead. They lay better and longer through the season then Guineas. They do not roam as far and there are a few varieties that are almost quiet (muscovies make almost no noise at all).

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