Guineas as watch dogs

Discussion in 'Guinea Fowl' started by pattypenny, Jan 13, 2011.

  1. pattypenny

    pattypenny Songster

    Sep 27, 2007
    My guineas and my chickens are shareing living quarters this winter and so far they are getting along fine. This spring I plan to turn the guineas out to roam. I have EE and golden comet hens .I am getting a few blue/green eggs now. My guineas were hatched in July and august. I have 12 guineas in the pen. They are loud and if any strange animal or human comes near their pen they set off a terrible loud noise.
    I think if any thing was to enter the pen at night I would know at once that something was wrong.
  2. glenolam

    glenolam Songster

    Aug 19, 2009
    Canterbury, CT
    You *might* be alerted to predators but unfortunately mine don't do that for me. They live with my chickens just like yours do but only make a noise if something is coming after them. We've lost a lot of chickens in the past few months and the only time I was "alerted" by a guinea was when it was being chased by a fox.

    I wish you luck and hope your situation doesn't turn out like mine!
  3. flyweed

    flyweed Songster

    Feb 12, 2009
    I'd like to get some guinea fowl hatching I'd like a few mixed in with my chickens and Emu....anyone know of someone on the boards here with eggs for hatching?

  4. 12thmanjim

    12thmanjim In the Brooder

    Jan 8, 2011
    I have 2 pearl guineas that are great guard animals.
  5. bigdawg

    bigdawg AA Poultry

    Jun 28, 2009
    middle tenn
    Quote:there will be a lot of us selling eggs once they start laying
  6. cgmccary

    cgmccary Songster

    Sep 14, 2007
    NE Alabama
    Hey Patsy, I knew we were on the same wavelength & thought alike; I hatched out some Guineas in August too. I have 14, hatched by hens and living with the chickens. I'm unsure of the ratio of males to females but I hear lots of "buckwheats" & I notice the fighting of males (whose wattles are larger). The Guineas seem to mostly fight amongst themselves, and seem especially loyal to the hens that hatched &/or mothered them -- mine look to be the size of yours. I had several broody hens and all wanted to get out and compete to play "mother" to the keets so they had many mothers (3 hens sat on eggs including my OEG bantam hen, 6 yrs old at least-- she hatched 5 including the white one mentioned below).

    I have one white one and the rest are Pearl -- though 2 or 3 of the Pearled have 2-3 solid white primary feathers. Mine roam free with the chickens, turkeys and geese during the day and put themselves up with the chickens at night. Some roost high in the coop rafters but the other half want to be with the hens. I have my Buckeye roosters in pens resting and only a game rooster running around.

    I wanted a flock to control the ticks, the japanese beetles and keep snakes honest. A gray rat snake got in under the hens one day (and just a couple of days before they were to hatch) and ate 7 of the Guinea eggs -- I relocated him deep in the forest. Before that, I also had to dispatch a Timber Rattlesnake (as I was in the middle of a project and didn't have the time to catch and relocate & he was too dangerous to the dogs and other animals)-- I fed him back to Nature via Turkey Vulture. How do Guineas handle a rattlesnake?

    I keep reading about Guineas beating up chickens on here and has me worried -- can't lose my hens. My Geese rule over everything anyway.

    Take care Patsy.

  7. msdoolittle

    msdoolittle Songster

    Dec 28, 2009
    I raised 4 guineas along side my chickens. No problem for about, oh, 8-9 months and then all you-know-what broke lose. The guineas began beating the absolute mess out of my hens. One day, I caught a guinea sitting/jumping on top of one of my best hens...initially I thought they may be mating, but NO the guinea was literally trying to kill the hen. The poor hen thought that the guinea was just being amorous, but I assure you he most certainly was not. He ripped feathers and skin off of the hen's neck with an extreme viciousness, and if I hadn't been there there's no telling how much more damage he would have done.

    I think either you're a 'guinea person' or you're not and I am decidedly NOT. I couldn't stand the noise; they screamed at the silliest things and mine didn't drive away snakes or predators. Now that's just my own experience, but that's all I have to go on.

    As a matter of fact, we had rotisserie guinea for supper. And that is what became of them!
  8. ChickieBooBoo

    ChickieBooBoo Cold Canadian Chick

    Dec 2, 2009
    I just introduced two young Guineas to my flock, they get along great. I had more trouble getting the new chickens to get along with each other then the guineas, they just mind their own business.
  9. pattypenny

    pattypenny Songster

    Sep 27, 2007
    Quote:So far no fighting among the guineas and hens execpt a squabble now and then . I see the male guineas chasing a chicken ever now and then so I am watching them close. my hens are in a pen and the guineas are in the pen with them. my guineas will go out to roam in the spring. You male goose will attack you when the hen is setting. We had a pair once and when we went out our back door that gander would be a long way from the house but as soon as he saw us he would start screaming and run to attack.The older children could fight him off but the younger children would have to run for the back door of the house before he arrived.
  10. cgmccary

    cgmccary Songster

    Sep 14, 2007
    NE Alabama

    My Guineas sound the alarm at everything and I've noticed the chickens ignore their alarms. Both Guineas and hens respond by running and hiding to the hawk alarm of the roosters. Most of the time, it is a Turkey Vulture (everyone calls a "buzzard" around here).

    My Guineas are fighting each other some but don't bother the chickens much. The fights are fast, furious, quick paced & then over with & all are running together again. I have at least 4-5 males of the 14. The set-up I have right now is working real well. The Guineas have a high roost near the ceiling in a large coop. I hope they can leave my hens alone because I really like them and want to keep 'em. There is plenty of room for every one in my coop (I think I posted a pic of that coop on another thread). When we had this last big snow, I kept hens and Guineas cooped up for 4 days straight and didn't have an incident. The snow was like a frozen lake because it would melt some on the surface and then re-freeze on top layer so the birds would have just skated out there. I thought someone may get injured. The geese and turkeys & games did stay out & made out fine. The dogs couldn't walk on some of it (not heavy enough to crack it-- my 65 lb hound dog!). The only rooster/ cockerel that's running at large, as I mentioned a game, is supposed to be a Pumpkin Hulsey (a Greenfire Farms one that folks say isn't a real one) and nothing messes with him except the geese. The geese have a nest & are laying now so the Gander has attacked me several times (and on top of that I went and checked on my honeybee hives to make sure they had food-- I thought, "they will be cold, lethargic . . . I'll just take a quick peek and leave a feeder with sugar feed," so out I go, no veil, no gloves, nothing, just a peek. Well they come out of there like a bunch of hornets. I got stung five times on my face and head -- even on my nose. I look awful,swollen, itching.

    I was putting back goose eggs at first but now, I have 4 in the fridge and the last 4 stored. I tried to give a couple to a friend who bakes, but she said goose eggs are sacred & she couldn't eat one in any way. Hmmm, oh well. Be glad when Spring arrives.


BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by: