I am interested in getting Guinea fowl but I have a couple of question?

Discussion in 'Guinea Fowl' started by Teery, Aug 16, 2013.

  1. Teery

    Teery Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My wife and I are interested in chickens / Guinea Fowl but from reading many post on BYC, chickens are becoming less desirable. I have a vegetable garden and everything I have read in my research suggests chickens are just to destructive.

    One of my question is: are guinea fowl equally destructive to gardens?

    I have a acre in the inland empire (So California). I want to free range the birds in the back half where I plant my garden ...or at least coop them there. I do understand they can fly..I really don't want to fence off the garden that is why I am leaning toward not having chickens..

    Further, we see triple digit temps during the summer months for weeks at a time..How do guinea fowl handle the heat?

    Chickens seem to fair well here as many of my neighbors have them..Other than red tail hawks that the ravens chase away, there is not much in the way of predators in this area...at least not that I am aware of...
     
  2. WCReloaded

    WCReloaded Out Of The Brooder

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    Guineas are originally from Africa so I would think that they can take the heat.

    WCR
     
  3. Teery

    Teery Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Good to know. Thanks.

    I talked to my neighbor across the street and she said she doesn't allow her chickens near her garden although, she said her father never had a problem with chickens destroying his garden. He let them free range his property. She did mention that she read guinea fowl are less destructive.

    She also said her ducks were great in her garden but they were real messy (the crap was pretty bad I guess) and hard to catch so she keeps them in a large pen.

    It appears to me that people have different experiences.
     
  4. redstar14

    redstar14 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    They r just as destructive and can stand the heat also very noisy
     
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2013
  5. Teery

    Teery Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yah, I am kind of finding that out...
     
  6. kitty928

    kitty928 Out Of The Brooder

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    Guineas don't scratch like chickens do but they will dig dusting holes in dry dirt. I have my vegetable garden fenced 4 ft high and they stay out for the most part. If they do get in, they don't stay long. They run through my flower gardens and eat all the bugs without destroying anything. The other plus is their poop isn't messy like chickens. :)
     
  7. Teery

    Teery Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My garden is around 130' x 50' and fencing it is an expensive proposition however, reading another thread on electric poultry fencing seems to be a reasonable option. 130' of this netting would only be a couple of hundred dollars. The electrical device to wire it is 160 or so. I would only need to net the length side as the other sides / back have 5' chain link. I like the idea of the netting as I can pull it down to get the garden tractor in there. So I am leaning back toward chickens.
     
  8. Trefoil

    Trefoil Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I think you would be happier with chickens. Guinea fowl aren't really a beginners' bird and are tougher to keep where you want them.
     
  9. Teery

    Teery Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Beginners Bird? I may not know the everyday ins and outs of any particular bird species, but I doubt very seriously that it is all that difficult. To me, they won't be pets nor am I going to show them. I also understand that keeping any bird that free ranges poses a challenge. That is why I joined this site. Raising birds seems to be pretty easy. Knowing and understanding certain behaviors is the knowledge I hope to gain. What I want to avoid is birds that have a tenancy to steam role a vegetable garden. If that bird doesn't exist, then I need to learn a method to minimize the damage or influence the birds natural behavior..i.e. an electric poultry fence....Options and behavior of certain breeds is what I am here to learn. I have owned, parrots, goats, sheep, horses, and have had salt water and fresh water fish tanks. I have been around chickens off and on although, I have never owned any but I am not really sweating taking care of or raising birds..
     
  10. PeepsCA

    PeepsCA Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I think what trefoil meant by "beginners bird" is that Guineas are typically a little more difficult to raise (they are skittish, flighty and wild from day 1), more difficult to contain (they do not respect fences AT ALL and will fly out of any pen that's not covered) and they aren't as cooperative and easy to coop train as chickens are (they prefer to roost in the trees, where you can't get to them but owls and other nocturnal predators can).

    They also need to be worked with and supervised quite a bit once you first start letting them out of their coop/pen or you'll end up with a bunch of screaming out of control noisy pests and bullies that your neighbors will most likely end up complaining about... and since your neighbor already has poultry, the Guineas will be over there a lot (IF they survive crossing the street... for whatever reason Guineas are drawn to the road). Being roamers by nature they cover a lot of ground and require a lot more effort on your part to keep home (and alive) than chickens do.

    To put it lightly (and no offence to you intended), most people that start off with Guineas as their first flock tend to bite off more than they can chew. We see it all the time on here...[​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2013

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