Hunt for the Missing Guineas..

Discussion in 'Guinea Fowl' started by Darkjeweler, Jan 9, 2012.

  1. Darkjeweler

    Darkjeweler Songster

    Aug 16, 2011
    Ok, so I have had guineas for about 6 months now. At the moment I have 17 left out of an original 25. The guineas free range the 4-ish acres of pasture out of my 20 acres. I live about 1/3 mile from the road and about 1/4 mile from my closest neighbor. Between me and my neighbors & road is nothing but woods.

    Well, yesterday I was inside and decided that I would go outside and do a little yard work. Getting outside, I did not see any of the guineas, but heard them in the distance. I simply thought they were on the other side of the house. After doing a little weedwacking I stopped to listen for them. I heard them, but it sounded like they were far off in the direction of my closest neighbors house, so I decided to take a walk down his driveway to see if by chance they had meandered down there (this would be a first). I got about 1/2 way down the driveway and stopped to listen, but no guineas. Ok, maybe I was wrong, so I headed back to the house. Basically back at the house I heard them start up again, so back down the driveway I went. When I got 1/2 way down the neighbors driveway I noticed the sound seemed to be coming from the next neighbors house down the road.. grrrrr... Ok, so I found a likely spot and when tromping though the woods and scrub-brush to get to that neighbors driveway (easier than walking all the way around).. Finally, after getting to the driveway I could see all 17 guineas all the way down by that neighbors house crying at their front door (definately a first)... When they spotted me, they came running down the driveway and stopped a few feet from me. I started walking back home figuring that they would follow. They stayed behind me for about 20 yards and then decided to start meandering off into the woods again (stupid birds). Slighty annoyed at this point, I walked all the way home, got a little pail of cracked corn and walked all the way back to where the birds were. Luckily, the birds had decides to come back out onto the driveway. I showed them the corn and then started walking home while sprinkling a few kernels behind me. They followed me all the way home. After getting home, they took off again, but this time down the 1st neighbors driveway (did I mention"stupid birds" yet?). Luckily, they came back on their own a few min later and stayed around the house for the rest of the day.

    I hope this does not become a habit for them, I really don't want to have to keep reminding them of where home is. grrr....

  2. stoopid

    stoopid Chicken Fairy Godmother

    Aug 3, 2011
    Long Island, NY
    Get used to this kind of behavior... That's what Guineas do!!
  3. PeepsCA

    PeepsCA Crowing

    Mar 28, 2011
    BFE, CA
    When my younger birds wander too far I bring them back home (using a scoop of feed as a lure), and coop them up. I take their food away the next morning after they've eaten, but leave them locked up until mid afternoon, then I let them out just for a couple hours before sundown and make sure the pen door is shut so they can't come and go as they please. Then in the evening when it's the normal time to coop up I re-hang the feeder, shake it and call them... they typically come running, wanting back in and wanting food. I usually do this 2-3 days in a row then start letting them out in the mornings again and see how it goes. They tend to stick around a little better, so maybe give this a try. My older birds all know to stay home, they know the drill, lol.
  4. MuranoFarms

    MuranoFarms Songster

    Nov 14, 2009
    Boyers, Pa
    Sounds like typical goof-ball guinea behavior. [​IMG]
  5. Darkjeweler

    Darkjeweler Songster

    Aug 16, 2011
    Well, in the morning the guineas are coaxed out of the coop/run area with a scoop of feed scattered on the ground just outside the pen. During the day I am at work and they free-range. When I get home it is normally just after dusk and they are all roosing on the bird enclosure. I call them down with a little feed and then bring them inside the enclosure and let them eat in there. When they are finished, they fly up onto the roosts in their own small coop. They have done this like clockwork.. Once in a while I will get a guinea that does not want to come down and stays up ontop of the enclosure for a couple hours till it is finally ready to join the rest. Yes, my guineas will come to the ground after dark if I am there. [​IMG]

    The only thing I can figure about yesterday is that the guineas got sidetracked chasing a bug or something, made it down to the neighbors driveway, saw the house at the end of the driveway and made a b-line for it. The guineas have not seen any other houses but mine, so they might have gotten confused and assumed that the neighbors house was theirs then realized they had no clue where they were. [​IMG]

    Just so you can get a better idea of their living space, here is the enclosure and there is a 4x4x8 coop in the back the guineas sleep in.
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2012
  6. zazouse

    zazouse Crowing

    Sep 7, 2009
    Southeast texas
    I bet something scared them and they just got lost.
    I have 100's of guineas and they have never left my property , my closest neighbors are mabe 2/10 of a mile but there is super thick grass grown in their fields and the birds can't get threw it without flying over.
  7. terrilhb

    terrilhb Songster

    Dec 11, 2010
    Sounds like you had a day like I did yesterday. Mine went visiting my neighbor 3x yesterday. After the 3rd time the 6 instigators were put back in their run and coop. The other 3 are just followers. Today they will not be allowed out. They will learn to keep their hineys home. Luckily when I went and found them they followed me home. I am sure my neighbor wanted to kill them. They stood out there screaming. When they saw me they got quiet. With a little scratch they followed me home. Silly birds.
  8. Darkjeweler

    Darkjeweler Songster

    Aug 16, 2011
    Well, Monday, 2 out of the 17 went missing. No idea if a predator got them, if they got lost from the group and wound up somewhere they should not be, or if they just decided to explore the world.. At this rate, come spring I am going to have like 2 guineas left out of 25-ish I started with... This morning, shortly after letting them out of the run, I found them wandering down by the 1st neighbors driveway. They came right back when they saw me, but I guess I will just have to assume they might not be there one day when I get home.
  9. KrisH

    KrisH Songster

    Thanks Pepps, this is great information, and I will rememebr it, if we ever or should I say when this happens to us. So far 15 guineas came to our house and 15 are still here. They coop themselfes up at dusk. I am a little concerned that come spring and they hit maturity, I may have to move them out of the chicken house. So far everyone gets along. Of course I will have to move the guineas, since they could use a smaller house.
  10. Darkjeweler

    Darkjeweler Songster

    Aug 16, 2011
    Just remember, sometimes females will go missing because they have decided to sit on a nest. One day they are gone and then a few weeks later they come back with little puff balls. I don't think this happened to mine, but you never know.

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