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Broody guinea hen?

Discussion in 'Guinea Fowl' started by schuey, May 7, 2011.

  1. schuey

    schuey Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 24, 2011
    Gainesville, FL
    She has been sitting on her nest (in some bushes on the ground in my fenced yard) since the 4th of May, but she gets up and hangs out with the male guinea, eats, and drinks for about 45 minutes once or twice a day. Is this normal and will the eggs still hatch if she is off them for that long?

    Thanks

    PS I plan on moving her into a brooding pen in a couple of days when I will put some chicken eggs under her as well (good timing I hope).
     
  2. PeepsCA

    PeepsCA Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Big Oak Valley, CA
    Quote:45 mins is a long time for the eggs to cool down, plus add in some time to get them warm again... that would be a pretty drastic temp fluctuation. I can't speak for everyone but I can say it's not normal with my flock and I can't imagine she'll hatch any of that clutch, but maybe the eggs in the middle have stayed warm enough. I no longer let my Hens go broody on their eggs, (I collect and incubate them), but last year (and previous years) my Hens usually left the nest once or twice a day for barely a minute (long enough for a couple bites to eat, a swallow of water and a big poop, lol), then they'd run back to the nest doin' double time, lol.

    Guinea Hens are not like broody Chickens... if you move the eggs and the Hen, she will most likely abandon them and just neurotically pace back and forth in the pen buck-wheating her head off. You may get lucky tho and actually have a determinedly broody Guinea Hen, but it's not real likely.

    Good luck, hope it works out for you.
     
  3. cgmccary

    cgmccary Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You're in Gainesville, FL so warm enough there (we're in the 80's today & imagine you were higher) so 45 minutes IMHO is not too long. I have had chicken hens dust bathe, eat, drink, scratch around for 45 minutes give or take and hatch every egg (in cool weather). I have two broody Guinea hens and the days I've been home, I have not seen them leave the nest once. My turkey hen is brooding a nest and she did not get off today but yesterday, she left the nest for about an hour. The hens usually know what they are doing.

    I agree with PeepsCA, you cannot move her because she will not stick to a new nesting place. Some chicken hens will but just as many won't either; I don't Guineas ever can be moved with success.
     
  4. melroseladi

    melroseladi Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 17, 2011
    Melrose, Florida
    My hen has been doing the same thing and today she got off the nest a few times for extended periods of time foraging in the yard and around the pen with the male. She went back in on the nest about 6 tonight and I just went to check on them and she is still sitting.
     
  5. ColbyNTX

    ColbyNTX Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 2, 2009
    Woods, TX
    That is pretty normal.
     
  6. schuey

    schuey Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 24, 2011
    Gainesville, FL
    So everyone thinks that I should just leave the guinea hen where she is in the yard and not put her in the brooding pen?
     
  7. PeepsCA

    PeepsCA Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Big Oak Valley, CA
    Quote:I'd only leave her on an outdoor nest if she is completely safe from predators. If you really want her to hatch keets, keep her locked in the coop/run until she's laid her egg for the day, then let her out to free range and continue to do this until she goes broody on the nest. Personally I'd collect the keets as soon as they hatch and raise them in a brooder, but some have perfect success letting the Momma Guinea raise keets in a safe situation. I've never heard/read much about Guineas successfully hatching and raising chicks, probably because they aren't known for being the best Mommas (which is why people with broody Chicken Hens often use them to brood Guinea eggs and raise keets instead of letting the Guinea Hen that laid the eggs do it!).
     
    Last edited: May 7, 2011
  8. schuey

    schuey Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 24, 2011
    Gainesville, FL
    Do people think it would be possible to allow her to hatch the eggs, then collect her and the keets/chicks and put everyone in a brooding pen with a run and let her raise the babies that way?

    Thanks
     
  9. PeepsCA

    PeepsCA Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Big Oak Valley, CA
    It is possible. But she will turn into a Tazmanian Guinea Hen Devil when you attempt taking the keets, so be ready for a fight, and I mean a vicious one, it's best to have a helper. Someone to collect the keets into a box or bucket with a towel in the bottom, and someone to hold the Hen back...with a rake or something (LOL I'm serious).

    Once you move everybody, the Hen may or may not accept this change... she may trample her keets, pacing because she wants out, so you will have to monitor that for a while. If it looks like she's not focused on her keets and stressed out about being locked up I'd take them out and raise them in a brooder like I mentioned previously.
     
    Last edited: Jul 15, 2011
  10. schuey

    schuey Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 24, 2011
    Gainesville, FL
    Thanks PeepsCA and everyone, I appreciate any and all the input!
     

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