Can Guineas fly???? And other questions...

Discussion in 'Guinea Fowl' started by Frozen Feathers, Jul 12, 2007.

  1. Frozen Feathers

    Frozen Feathers Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 4, 2007
    Maine
    What do you feed them? Will they eat layer pellets/mash and how good is it for them? Will they get along with my chickens? Does it matter if they are boys or girls, do the boys get aggressive?? I've been thinking about getting some...
     
  2. 4H kids and mom

    4H kids and mom Cooped Up

    974
    3
    171
    Mar 10, 2007
    Southern Wisconsin
    I can help ya. From what I've learned so far (my guineas are 6 weeks old now) guineas do better left pretty much alone, as in not cuddled and held like a chick. The few we held and made friendly were the ones that died. [​IMG] The rest have done fine as long as I let them be. Go figure!

    YES they fly! They fly into our trees, up on the roof of the coop, even up to the first roof of our house! They fly VERY well at a young age. We clipped the wings on ours for now to help them learn that this is home, and its worked great.

    Ours share the coop with our chickens and young chicks, and even our 2 turkeys! They get along great with everyone so far, and follow what the chickens do (like going back into the coop at dusk). In turn, the chickens have learned to take head in their warning calls, and my roos become alert and aware when the guineas sound the alarm, and the hens and chicks run for cover. They all eat the same feed, which is a mix of layer/grower crumble. They forage more than chicks and eat ALOT of bugs, and grass. They get into trees and pick bugs off the bark. They look under logs and eat the bugs crawling there too. Flip over a rock or two for them and the bugs will be gone in no time!

    You will not know if they are boys or girls until they are older, and sometimes not even then, as they will look exactly the same. No one that I know of offers them sexed because they are so so so tiny as day olds it would harm them to try it. I have seen no aggression of any kind in any of mine. In fact, they are quite mellow and peaceful, unless they are on alert about something. Then, they dart around, head for the coop or the trees and screach the alarm noise and all h*** breaks loose in my yard as the hens and chicks run for cover and all of my roos stop dead where they are all eyes on the sky and looking around for whatever danger the guineas have seen (or have thought they'd seen). Its not only amusing to watch, but it also puts me up in the "whats goin on?" mode and I end up searching the sky and the fields with my eyes too! The last time they did this was last week because they'd seen a opposum. It heard all the rocus and took off!

    They are a neat addition to our flock and yard and I truely enjoy them. They can be LOUD though, so if you have close neighbors they will not like them. Also, even if you clip them, they will wander about and not stay in a confined area for long (another thing your neighbors would not like). BUT, when done right (Ie: keeping them locked in the coop for a week or two before letting them out) they learn where "home" is and always return. Mine are often gone from view during the day, but I can hear them. They alwasy come back to the coop at night and when all the chickens are locked up, the guineas look down at me from their roost up high in the coop as if to say "See? Here we are!"
     
  3. RoyalHillsLLC

    RoyalHillsLLC Chillin' With My Peeps

    281
    0
    149
    Mar 5, 2007
    NW Louisiana-Vivian
    I am not sold on the idea of mixing more guineas with my chickens. I bought four and only one made it to adulthood. They were WILD from the start. One of them was either injured when we got it, or soon thereafter from my kids trying to hold them. They would never let us hold them, and the one that survived is so stupid he can't find his way in and out of the door to the pen without assistance or until he wanders around and lucks into finding it.

    I am talking my family out of getting more because I am convinced the wildness has a negative impact on the rest of the chickens and ducks that I run with them. We like our birds to be easily handled and docile, and guineas definitely are not.
     
  4. JackieK318

    JackieK318 Chillin' With My Peeps

    473
    0
    159
    Apr 29, 2007
    Missouri
    I have guineas for the insect value - they eat everything! They're not so great as pets.
     
  5. Frozen Feathers

    Frozen Feathers Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 4, 2007
    Maine
    MMMmmm they don't look like they could fly do they?? They are a bit round. [​IMG]
    Oh well, maybe when I win the Publisher Clearing House or the Powerball and buy my dream house in the middle of nowhere I can get some... [​IMG]

    My neighbors would freak if their were Guineas in their yard, well one of them anyway...as for the noise, I guess if their barking dogs ALL DAY :mad: don't bother me then the noise of my pets shouldn't bother them. [​IMG]
     
  6. JackieK318

    JackieK318 Chillin' With My Peeps

    473
    0
    159
    Apr 29, 2007
    Missouri
    My neighbors think my guinea noises are actually yappie dogs - not so noisy. Mine do fly pretty good and some people let their guineas roost in trees.
     
  7. MTtroutwithwings

    MTtroutwithwings Chillin' With My Peeps

    490
    1
    141
    Jul 10, 2007
    Montana Country
    We purchased a couple of guineas keats out of ignorance to appease our 6 yr olds when the local feed store where no longer selling baby chicks for the season and it has had it's ups-n-downs. The first thing we learned is they are not cuddleable. They're now 10 weeks old, love to rip up weeds & grass (keep them away from your veggie garden) I've yet to see the reduction in bugs, it's grasshopper h..ll around here and when they hear my voice they run after me like a lost puppy but as soon as reach down to pet one, it does the "scoot shoot" away from me, they definitely do not like to be touch! Definitely not a city bird, they are loud! I live out in the country with the closest neighbor about 1/2 mile away, she commented the other day about how she can & loved to hear my kids playing with all the yelling and "screeching" going on, little does she know it's the birds! LOL!!! I justed smiled and nodded politely. [​IMG] We're about to introduce 15 baby chicks to them to share the coop soon (they're 2 weeks old and still indoors with us) so I'm glad to hear they get along. The guineas will be great for protecting them as well. It's a love/hate relationship soooo choose wisely!
    Lori
     
    1 person likes this.
  8. Standard Hen

    Standard Hen Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 17, 2007
    Massachusetts
    I am on vacation in 2 weeks and am finally going to let the 1 year old Guineas that I got in May run free from their pen prison and hope they stay. They are certainly weird, but they do seem to love my chickens and came from a woman who kept them with hers. I have the 1 male and 2 females, the pen that I have them in was full of weeds etc as it used to be a dog run when I had large dogs. They have stripped the thing clean. I live in the woods and have more bugs then they will know what to do with. The other day I heard them screaming, and I mean screaming, knew something was wrong so ran to look and there was the biggest coyote I have ever seen just strolling through the back. He had a white muzzle so I will assume he is the grandaddy of them all. I shooed him away and he loped off into the woods and I proceeded to run out there like a mad woman to lock all my free rangers in their pen. Been here 30 years and never seen that in broad daylight. So much building is going on they have no where to go I guess. Guineas are cetainly great watchdogs but so were my geese when I had them, even people were afraid! I hope they stay, as odd as they Guineas are I like them! When I let them out they will have been here 9 weeks so I hope they have acclimated enough and they will love to get out and eat, eat, eat, bugs until the cows come home.[​IMG]
     
  9. ozark hen

    ozark hen Living My Dream

    6,967
    23
    291
    Apr 4, 2007
    Mansfield, MO
    I never had a problem at all with any of the guineas I have had when it comes to the garden. In fact, they will eat the "bad" bugs and leave the veggies alone. chickens, on the other hand, well, keep it fenced. [​IMG] Guineas will take care of all the ticks and insects for you, alert you when something/someone arrives, and will learn to come to you when you take out treats. Mine never got where I could handle them but they would come to me and return to the coop at night if kept locked up long enough to know this is home. I lost a dozen four week old keets by accidentally not latching the gate securely and they are gone now. I have six more babies and this time they are not going out till latch is fixed and they are much older. They now snuggle with five week old silkies and one five week old keet. my six are only a week and a half old now. I keep a combination of chick starter and game bird starter(for keets) in the box that they are all in. Keets need the game bird starter for growth. Plus, I mix some of the feed with yogurt for them all.
     
  10. 4H kids and mom

    4H kids and mom Cooped Up

    974
    3
    171
    Mar 10, 2007
    Southern Wisconsin
    I am on vacation in 2 weeks and am finally going to let the 1 year old Guineas that I got in May run free from their pen prison and hope they stay.

    When you let them out, dont let them all out the first few times. They are very bonded to each other and if you let one or two out they will stay very close and call to and "talk' to each other and this will help them learn where "home" is. Also, if you'd have them on "lock down" for 9 weeks, I am fairly certain they know where the food is and will stick around. [​IMG]
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by