How soon to let 7 month old guineas free-range?

Discussion in 'Guinea Fowl' started by JLeigh, Apr 19, 2012.

  1. JLeigh

    JLeigh Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 19, 2012
    North Georgia
    As I wrote in an earlier post, I have 2 guineas (one male, one female). They were 7 months old when I got them and I've had them in the run for 4 weeks now. Is it too soon to let them free-range? How long should I keep them in the run?
     
  2. PeepsCA

    PeepsCA Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 28, 2011
    Big Oak Valley, CA
    6 weeks is what's recommended (especially for reprogramming adults to a new coop/home), some get away with less time but some need longer before their birds know where home/safety and their roosting place is. If they are already calm and used to you being around them, and they come running for food/treats, you should be able to get them back in the run easily at this point. If they came from a larger flock and were allowed to free range before you got them, they may fly off in search of their old flock tho. Sometimes it's better to wait a little longer, in that case.

    When I start free ranging a new flock I usually take away their food around noon and then let them out in the late afternoon for a while (hungry, so I can use food and treats to my advantage to get them to come back in) and I hang out with them to make sure they don't wander to far or get stuck behind a fence or something. Then I make sure to herd/lure/call them back in before the sun goes down (and if all goes well I make this a routine for a while, gradually working up to longer and longer time allowed out, but always getting everybody back in before the sun goes down and they have a chance to roost in the trees or in the coops/sheds).

    If you have other poultry they may try to go hang out with them, since Guineas are flock oriented. If it's a fiasco or they end up in the trees or on the roof etc, once you do finally get them back in I'd give them a few more weeks locked in, and then try it again.
     

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