How do you limit free-range Guineas?

Discussion in 'Guinea Fowl' started by DAinVA, Aug 16, 2011.

  1. DAinVA

    DAinVA New Egg

    Aug 16, 2011
    I started with 8 guineas. Lost two while they were young. Lost four more from an attack by some animal at night. Feathers were everywhere, so it probably wasn't a fox. Most likely my neighbors yellow lab. Today, my wife said that my last two guineas went over to the neighbors yard and their lab killed one! It makes me sick! The last two were a male/female pair and they were laying eggs, so I was hoping to increase my flock.

    I want to allow my guineas to free-range so they can eat up all the bugs and weed seeds, but how do I keep them on my property? I have found out from some of my other neighbors that they have been wandering around their yards too. I let them out in the morning and they are back in the coop at night when I lock them up for protection. My neighbors don't mind them wandering around their property, but I can't get mad at them either when their dog kills one on their own property.

    I live out in the country with 7+ acres and woods all around. Unless I put the "invisible fence" collars on each guinea like my dog has, I don't know how to keep them 'home'.

    Any help would be appreciated.
  2. livenwpeeps

    livenwpeeps Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 6, 2011
    King William
    I feel your pain. I don't have a lab problem but I have a road problem but with the same end results. I'm on 900 acres and my biggest preditor is the one little country road through the farm. I have tried to fence off the road to just slow them down and maybe they will forget the road but it didn't work. I put up little windmills. I hung CD's from the tree branches. I put up scarecrows. I put up guinea fowl crossing signs. I have even hid in the corn field across the street to jump out and scare them but they only looked at me like I had lost my mind and crossed the road anyway. Which now that I think about it, it problably gave them a good laugh seeing their 40 some year old, a couple of pounds too heavy "Mom" come running out of the corn field screaming her head off. I have not found anything to keep them from getting in the road except to keep them in their run but that defeats the purphose of having them. So I started letting them free range in the afternoons only to limit their time in the road. Then they return to the coop for the night. The road still claims one here and there but it has slowed down. Sorry I couldn't be of more help but I think a lot of people have this problem with roaming guineas.
  3. froggie71

    froggie71 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 18, 2009
    Shamong, NJ
    We fenced our backyard with 2 x 4 welded wire fencing with t-posts. They almost never fly over it. Can't figure out how. On occasion they get scared and 1 or 2 will accidentally fly over it, but then pace on the opposite side trying to figure out how to get back with the rest of the flock. But maybe my guineas are exceptionally stupid. [​IMG]

    The fencing has to be so they can't see a place to land on. I think that is the key.
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2011
  4. amberflea

    amberflea Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 11, 2010
    Central WI
    YES, Fence, we bought the inexpensive 4 ft height woven wire and pushed steel posts in the ground, tried everything else to no avail. I RARELY find one on the other side, and if one does get over, it just paces back and forth wanting to get back with the others... the ONLY solution I have found...
  5. guineahen14

    guineahen14 Out Of The Brooder

    Jun 17, 2010
    Shelbyville Tn
    I have had Guineas for about 11 years now, they are "free spirits" and love to wander. It has been some battle over the years to get them to roost in a coop, I still have 3 old males who insist on roosting in large trees on the property. I have been lucky with my guineas that I got a few years ago, raised them with chickens and every night they go into the coops to roost. I have seen them run back and forth along fence lines for hours not realizing they could fly over just like they did a few hours before. Very strange. I think guineas are great birds and I will always have some.
  6. perchie.girl

    perchie.girl Desert Dweller Premium Member

    Quote:I was thinking about that visual thing just as I was reading the OP. Guineas need some visual reference to judge the location and height of the fence. Of course when panicked they shoot up anyway and will go over anything Hmm i wonder if deer fence would be a good experiment... its inexpensive and six foot tall.
  7. PeepsCA

    PeepsCA Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 28, 2011
    Big Oak Valley, CA
    Constant correction and herding them back in my fenced 10+ acres has worked for my flocks. You have to be consistent tho, which isn't always easy. I used an empty grain sack and shook it at them to spook mine back over the fence every time I would see that they'd flown over... (to make being outside the fence line seem worse than being inside it). Eventually when they'd see me stomping out there they'd just high tail it back over the fence, lol. It seems to have paid off, over a year later I have 3 flocks, 42 adult birds total and they stay within my fenced land. Lots of work tho.
  8. AlienChick

    AlienChick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 9, 2010
    Glasgow, KY
    I free range my guineas with my chickens and I have the cheap deer fencing around my property to keep them inside.
    I cut the deer fencing in half to double the coverage, so it’s not 6-ft high anymore.
    It does keep the birds inside the perimeter for the most part.
    Of course, all it takes is for one free spirit to fly over the fence, then they all want to do the same.
    The guineas just can’t seem to figure out that they can just fly back over,
    so they usually pace back and forth until I go herd them around to an opening and let them back inside.

  9. OKGlocker

    OKGlocker Out Of The Brooder

    Aug 2, 2011
    NE Oklahoma
    Quote:Yes, I have found that this does work to some degree... and consistency IS the key...
    They are teachable (though they also try your patience lol), but it does take some time...
    You have to go herd them back EVERY time you see them in a "forbidden" area, to reinforce your message...
    I go out with a yardstick in each hand, spread my arms and gently ease them back into the yard...
    Once you get a few of the "leaders" of the flock to understand, you can eventually find success, at least for the most part...

  10. AquaEyes

    AquaEyes Chillin' With My Peeps

    I don't have guineas, but I had a thought about this. I work in a lab and we have budgies and zebra finches. We restrict their feed so that they are hungry when they go in the testing booth (they get food rewards for correct answers), then give them a little snack before we close the lab. They are weighed daily, so we know right away if one needs supplemental feeding.

    The second part of my thought came from here:

    Now here's what I was thinking -- what if you tried some training? Remove their feed from their coop, but give them a little "snack" just as you lock them in. Come morning, let them out, have food ready to throw on the ground, and play some sound like in the peafowl vid I posted. Keep playing the sound every time you throw down food, so they associate the sound with being fed. If you then repeat the "play sound/feed birds" routine a few times a day in the same area, they might stick around, knowing this is where they get their goodies.

    Worth a try?


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