How do I start Guinea fowls?

Discussion in 'Guinea Fowl' started by eggthenoodle, Aug 7, 2014.

  1. eggthenoodle

    eggthenoodle New Egg

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    Do we do the same as chickens? Do they need a coop? Please tell all!!! From some one in need of advice
     
  2. lightchick

    lightchick Overrun With Chickens

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    My friend raised Guinea fowl with her bantam chicks. They need the same care as chickens.
     
  3. R2elk

    R2elk Overrun With Chickens

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    Read Raising Guinea Fowl 101 and pay particular attention to posts by PeepsCA.

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/312682/raising-guinea-fowl-101

    Starting guinea keets differs from raising chickens in that they need a higher protein feed. Keets should be started on a turkey or game bird starter that has 28 to 30% protein.

    Guineas are a flock bird and the recommended number to keep is ten. While they can be brooded with chickens or turkeys and everything may seem well while they are growing up, their true nature will show up when it is breeding season. At that time they can and do become very mean. If there are enough guineas they take out their meanness on each other instead of on the other poultry.

    If you want to protect your guineas from predators, they will need a coop and need to be housed at night.

    Good luck.
     
  4. eggthenoodle

    eggthenoodle New Egg

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    Hmmm... I was thinking of free ranging them. So they get a lot of their food from the gardens. I heard they primarily eat a lot of insects unlike chickens that could eat the herbs in the garden is it true that guinea fowl are primarily protein eaters?.

    I heard they nest in the trees, so that is news that I need a coop, is it similar to any chicken coop. I assume that I do not need nesting boxes?

    I was hoping they were low maintenance and could fend for themselves.

    How old do they have to be before culling?
     
  5. R2elk

    R2elk Overrun With Chickens

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    If you want guineas to leave the vegetation alone in your garden, never feed them anything from the garden. Guineas are vegetation eaters as well as insect eaters and if the greens in your garden are something they like to eat, they will eat it. Guineas unlike chickens do not tear the ground up as much in the garden.

    Guineas DO NOT NEST IN TREES. Guineas nest on the ground. Guineas like to roost in trees where they are vulnerable to numerous night time predators such as owls and raccoons. If you wish to keep your guineas safe from predators they need a coop which you train them to go into at night and then close them in to keep the predators out. The coop needs to have built in roosts. If nest boxes are built in they need to be on the ground and the guineas can be taught to lay in the coop but it is not the natural thing. They prefer to lay in secluded well hidden spots on the ground which makes them vulnerable to predators when they sit on a clutch of eggs.

    While guineas are more wild than tame, they are a domesticated fowl and as such need human care for them to do their best. There still are wild guineas in their native lands. Since you do not state where you are from, it is impossible to know what your climate is like and whether or not that climate is hospitable to guineas without human intervention. Domesticated fowl need to be supplied with food, water and protection from the elements no matter how wild they may seem.

    If you don't protect the guineas from predators, you will not have to be concerned with culling them because there won't be any left to cull. Most people who keep guineas develop a great fondness for them and allow them to live out their entire lives which is possible to be from 12 to 20 years if they survive predators.
     
  6. lightchick

    lightchick Overrun With Chickens

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    I read that Guineas can actually breed with chickens.
     
  7. R2elk

    R2elk Overrun With Chickens

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    Most poultry can interbreed. In the majority of cases the offspring are sterile.

    There are a number of threads in this forum discussing guinea/chicken crosses. In the case of these hybrids, they are sterile and they also tend to be short lived.
     

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