Guineas "stolen" by neighbor's flock...

Discussion in 'Guinea Fowl' started by RobG7aChattTN, Sep 27, 2013.

  1. RobG7aChattTN

    RobG7aChattTN Chillin' With My Peeps

    Well, after raising guineas since spring and after having horrible losses due to a pair of Cooper's Hawks...I finally was left with 5 guineas that seemed to be pretty good about lofting in the barn at night and looking out for hawks and dogs during the day. I have 41 keets in the brooders ready to add to this small flock when the keets get larger and I thought things were going fairly well. Out of the blue out of the woods marched a flock of 12 guineas of similar size and age and my guineas quickly mixed in with them. I was curious to see if those guineas might have "wandered off" from somewhere else and might join my guineas in the cozy barn with all the crumbles and fresh water or if my guineas would wander off with these new interlopers. I "think" my guineas separated from that flock and roosted in the barn that night and the next day I saw all 17 out wandering around together. Last night after dark I wend out to the barn with a flash light to see if I had just my guineas, all 17, or none at all. Well, I had none at all. I hope that they were locked up safely in a neighbor's coop and not up in a tree somewhere. Anyhow, I haven't seen them today. If they come around I'll try and heard them all into the barn and get my guineas out of the flock and lock them back up in the loft until my new keets are large enough to add to their flock. I hope the neighbor (I have no idea who owns these new guineas) didn't lock them all up in an attempt to imprint my guineas on his/her coop...not that it seems necessary. Odd how quickly and easily my guineas took off with these guineas. It makes me suspicious about the 7 that disappeared while I was out of town for 3 days. I wonder if they took up with some other neighbor's flock. There did used to be a lone pair that wandered through on occasion and they were much older and larger than my little guys at the time. Anyhow, I wanted to post this in case someone had a similar situation and was wondering what would happen. Also, apparently it is pretty easy to add new guineas to your existing flock as mine sure seemed to go happily. It might help that they are all (all 17) not fully mature.
     
  2. granny hatchet

    granny hatchet Tastes like chicken Premium Member

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    mabey the ones u lost before had babies and these are ur guineas? they will hide out for a month or so for their nest. i would try some white millet to get them in the barn and lock up all in there for the winter. if not, i would go looking for neighbors and posting signs
     
  3. RobG7aChattTN

    RobG7aChattTN Chillin' With My Peeps

    I did manage to get my guineas back. I located the likely neighbor and luckily I had lost mostly Royal Purple which this neighbor didn't have. His are Pearl, Opaline, and a very few Lavender. My lone Pearl guinea was tagging along with the four Royal Purple. It was actually a good experience as I got to talk to a nearby neighbor about guineas and about the specifics of which neighbors had dogs and how plentiful raccoons are in the area. I'm fortunate that this neighbor has already called all the neighbors with loose dogs and warned them to keep them on their own property. I had actually wondered where some of those dogs had disappeared to. Anyhow, I'm glad I was able to re-locate my guineas. They were easy enough to round up and herd them into an empty run at the neighbor's place...they all stayed together and walked right in. I've put them back up in their loft and locked them in. I might let them out in a week or so if the neighbor's flock doesn't come around any more. Otherwise I might just leave them up there for a few months when I can add the 41 keets to the loft and get a unified flock going.
    <a href="http://i59.photobucket.com/albums/g315/robgarren/Facebook/Untitled Album/IMG_0315_zps839b389f.jpg" border="0" alt=" photo IMG_0315_zps839b389f.jpg"/></a>
     
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2013
  4. chicken farmer2

    chicken farmer2 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Are guineas hard to raise? i always thought about getting 2-3
     
  5. granny hatchet

    granny hatchet Tastes like chicken Premium Member

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    thats great! u got them back and made a friend. bet theres no bugs around for a mile. wish mine would round up that easy.haha
     
  6. granny hatchet

    granny hatchet Tastes like chicken Premium Member

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    guineas are not hard to raise but u need to know them before u get them, like start w keets or they will wander off.haha, they have habits u learn as u go and u work with that. keets are tender but a grown guinea is a very hardy bird
     
  7. Cindy in PA

    Cindy in PA Overrun With Chickens

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    I started with a stray guinea & then 6 adults that were used to roosting in trees. I had no trouble teaching them to go in at night. I did keep them in for about 3 months & every night I would go to their pen & use a whistle, yell guinea treats & throw them millet & wheat. All but 2 were lost to predators last year. Last September I got 6 14 week old guineas & did the same thing. They always come in at night also. Unfortunately 3 females have been lost this summer during the day over 3 months. My remaining 5 are so well behaved that I am amazed. Maybe I have just been lucky with training twice!
     
  8. RobG7aChattTN

    RobG7aChattTN Chillin' With My Peeps

    You need to get more than 2 or 3. They are flocking birds and feel very uneasy if their numbers get low. My flock has gotten down to 5 (there are 41 keets in brooders waiting to be added) and the adults have gotten much more frightful at that low number. They sure seemed happy when they were pecking around with the dozen birds from the neighbors. I think you need at least 12 and expect some losses to predators if you keep them free-ranging. My 5 are what is left after a few months after starting with 20 keets and even after adding two adults into the mix towards the end. Admittedly most losses are due to a pair of Cooper's Hawks that moved into the area. The two adults that I bought had free-ranged for over a year before I bought them yet only lasted a month or so after I got them. They liked to roost outside on a perch attached to their loft and probably would still be around if they had gone into the loft every night. Now that they are gone I think my remaining birds will probably go back to staying in the loft at night. Some people do raise them from keets with chickens or even use a chicken to incubate and raise them. Those birds might do better in smaller numbers of guineas if they are kept with chickens as they might view themselves as one of the chickens.
     
  9. PeaChick C

    PeaChick C Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It seems like every year my guineas start to dwindle down and just when I think they will all be gone, a dozen or twenty hatch. They are happy birds when there are 10-20 of them and when they have plenty of room to roam. Having guineas is SO different than chickens or ducks. They are quirky and silly, smart at one moment then dumb as you could imagine the next. But they aren't hard to keep if you don't mind the noise, don't mind loosing one to a four-wheel predator every now and then, and don't mind your other birds getting tail pulled every now and then.
     
  10. RobG7aChattTN

    RobG7aChattTN Chillin' With My Peeps

    I finally figured out how to add photos!
    Here is the first meeting when a flock of 12 guineas marched out of the woods and met my 5 guineas:
    [​IMG]
    And the next day they were pecking around together:
    [​IMG]
    I gave them a scoop of scratch feed:
    [​IMG]
    And then that flock marched home and took my guineas along with them. The neighbor said that these birds (he as over 30 total) were gone for 3 days. Luckily, I got mine back.
    [​IMG]
    It was a short drive just around the corner. Hopefully they won't wander back (I have them locked in their loft in the barn right now).
     
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2013

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