Guinea Hens

Discussion in 'Guinea Fowl' started by Chilebound, Jul 17, 2010.

  1. Chilebound

    Chilebound Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 15, 2010
    I am new to the chicken thing, this is my second year, and second try. Last Thanksgving my neighbors dog killed my whole flock. I now have two seperate flocks, one in a tractor and freerange, and the other in a coop and run so if dog comes again I will have some left. Anyway I started all this chicken stuff because I am a gardener and I hoped they would eat bugs. While they eat some, they eat more tomatoes and stuff than bugs....I heard Guinea hens do better at the bug thing, but do they get a long ok with chickens? does anyone have them? and also I heard that they make a lot of noise-true? (while I live on an unrestricted 2 acre lot, it is in the middle of a very restricted neighborhood--I have the original farm house---I can have what ever I want --but I dont want my house burned down, or to be shot at etc) what about eggs, do they lay? any info would help!
     
  2. ScaredOfShadows

    ScaredOfShadows Chillin' With My Peeps

    Guineas are awesome bug eaters - between me and my neighbor we have 11 total. Their favorite things are ticks and beatle bugs that I've seen. They get along fine with chickens - especially if they are raised around them - they will bully them if they share the same feeding area however - guineas don't take no slack - lol.

    However -yes they can and do make a loud ruckus. Its not constant - but if they see predators - i.e. hawks overhead, dogs they aren't familiar with, cats, etc... they will make warning calls and if they are excited or seperated they will call to each other. The sound can travel a good distance - I live on 2 acres and the neighbor owns 3-3.5ish - and the guineas can be in his back yard I can easily hear them from my front yard (neighbor lives behind me) so if that gives you any idea. Inside the house I can hardly hear them at all and they can be just ouside in my yard.

    Also - if your going to let them free range - good luck on finding their eggs - the hens prefer to lay in the woods or in flower beds [​IMG] atleast in m free ranging experience. They like to roost up high - the ones around here roost in the small pine trees by the neighbor's large coops. Also guineas like to roam - the ones here make several trips around mine, the other poultry enthusiast neighbor, and his son (side me) 's properties a day - so about 7 acres. They usually stay in one area but early morning and late evening before roost time they go running around checking everything out [​IMG]

    If your worried about potential neighbor fights and retaliations - I would say not get them - but if your neighbors are good folk - find a audio file with google of guineas and go talk to your nearest neighbors and talk them about you thinking about getting guineas. Tell them their good points : love to eat ticks, cruise around and 'patrol', good alarms for predators, strange animals, etc... Let them hear an audio file of a guinea and see what they think. If the neighbors are okay with it - go for it. If they aren't okay with the idea of potential noisy visitors - I would suggest not going for guineas. [​IMG]

    Good luck!
     
  3. Chilebound

    Chilebound Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 15, 2010
    thanks for all the good info! you kindly answered all of my questions! I would want them, or some of them to stay in my garden (at least for part of the year), would a poultry net/fence keep them in? Two of the three nearest houses are empty and for sale right now, so it might be good for me to hurry and get some. do you know of a place that sells small numbers of them? are they considered chickens? They do lay it sounds like, but not a lot? and they hide the eggs...
     
  4. ScaredOfShadows

    ScaredOfShadows Chillin' With My Peeps

    If you raise them with chickens from a young age - they may lay their eggs in the coop - I've known people who breed/raise guineas who their guineas do like chickens...But me - mine are free range and just do their own thing - lol. I don't know about their lay rate.

    A fence will only keep them in if you clip their wings - they can fly/jump a long ways up. I would say as keets (babies) 4+ weeks old - fence them in the area you want them to stay and don't let them free range till they get large (say 10-12 weeks) this should help establish their main area when they age - so they'll mainly stick around there.

    As for places to get them..um..First I'd say check your local craigslist. Then ask in the "Breeder and Hatchery" or the "Guinea Fowl" threads where is best to get them.
     

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