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Guinea's as parents and "flock parenting"

Discussion in 'Guinea Fowl' started by Sisterof2cops, Aug 10, 2011.

  1. Sisterof2cops

    Sisterof2cops Out Of The Brooder

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    I currently have 8 adults 7 pearl and 1 white. I have had several hens in the past go broody in the woods to never return, so we kept replacing them. I was told that it is rare that the hens survive incubation and if keets do hatch they are bad parents. I had a hen go broody and did return much to our suprise with 21 keets in tow. I spoke to a good friend of mine about it and he said post it here as I could find no research validating that these fowl co parent. I don't mean the cock protecting the hen and keets by day and abandoning them at night. They have enlisted the rest of the flock, 2 hens as "nannies" to watch batches of the brood, the others are kept on the fringe about 5 ft. away and they use them as guards. If they overstep thier bounds they are quickly put in thier place. Does anyone else have experience with Guinea Fowl "flock parenting" or are my birds just strange?

    Dawn
     
  2. cheekyhen

    cheekyhen Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I too lost my hen when she went broody (I only had a pair) so this spring I got 4 keets, hoping for more hens...only got 1...[​IMG] BUTT--when they were old enough to let out, the adult male took care of them like a broodie would AND kept the other birds away from them, guarded them, called them over when he found bugs or goodies. [​IMG] "Uncle Vinny" as he is now been dubbed, also keeps my turkeys in line. I brooded the pair with some turkey poults so I think he has "little man syndrome" and thinks he is a turkey!![​IMG] They are characters! [​IMG]
     
  3. perchie.girl

    perchie.girl Desert Dweller Premium Member

    Quote:This last part about the whole flock raising the Keets is what they do in the wild. Congratulations on the Keetsies..... VBG. The Males will also parent if there are no other females around. There is even a YouTube video of it somewhere in my little collection of tidbits on guineas. The male will hunker down to warm up the keets just like the hen will. The Keets if they can make it to a couple of days old will follow which ever guinea is offering protection too.

    This is also why its best to have at least ten or more. Thats how they flock in the wild.... safety in numbers.
     
  4. Sisterof2cops

    Sisterof2cops Out Of The Brooder

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    Interesting!! The keets are now 4 mos. old, boy do they grow slowly compared to chickens. We have lost 2 adults and 13 chicks thus far. Most to feral dog attacks some to possums. We are left with 5 adults and 8 chicks.
     
  5. perchie.girl

    perchie.girl Desert Dweller Premium Member

    Quote:did you provide Game bird starter feed for them in the first four weeks? If not that's probably why they are growing slower. By four months they should be almost adult size. if not as heavy.
     
  6. Sisterof2cops

    Sisterof2cops Out Of The Brooder

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    Actually no I didn't and all the adults I got as keets and didn't feed it to them either. HMMM, didn't know I was supposed to. These keets are now spotted but still brown, all the adults with the exception of 1 are pearls. I'm just happy I still have some, and boy what good flyers they are.
     
  7. perchie.girl

    perchie.girl Desert Dweller Premium Member

    Quote:Its all a learning process for sure. Purena Game bird Startina is 30 percent protien. You can supplement them with some dry scrambled egg.... even the adults like it. Scrambled dry and mixed in with some feed makes it not recognizeable as an egg. Actually you can feed it this way to all your birds. Even crush up the eggshells and mix it in with the eggs for extra calcium too.... Yummy. Dont let the hubby dip into it though.... hee hee.
     
  8. Sisterof2cops

    Sisterof2cops Out Of The Brooder

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    I breed parrots so have tons of dehydrated egg food with shells in it. Perfect. Thanks for the tip.

    Dawn
     
  9. PeepsCA

    PeepsCA Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yah, they grow much faster on a high protein diet. Now at least you can be prepared for keets when your flock starts laying [​IMG]
     

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