Keeping Guineas in yard

MrPink

Hatching
Nov 30, 2021
4
5
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We have a fully enclosed/fenced in area, ~1.25 acres for my chickens, ducks, turkeys, geese, and... guineas. The fence is 4ft hog panel tall and has chicken wire attached so they can't get through the holes. The guineas have their wings clipped (we only clip one side because we read that it is better than both because it makes them "unbalanced", is that best?).

I mention this because our guineas LOVE escaping our yard and wandering over to our neighbors (we live in the country, but share a driveway with one other older couple). They used to not mind as much, but ever since they got rid of their sheep (which they housed in OUR barn) they have become really hostile about a few of our birds wandering over there. They aren't there all the time, and they aren't even doing anything particularly harmful (other than, you know... eating bugs). Outside of putting them in a fully enclosed run (which defeats the purpose of having guineas in the first place), I'm pretty much out of ideas, and was hoping that others may have suggestions as well.

I don't want to be the "bad neighbor", and want to accommodate as much as is reasonable, and have done everything they've asked thus far, but at this point I'm kind of resigned into the "not caring" mindset because I really can't see what harm they are causing.
 

DickMidnight

Songster
Oct 23, 2021
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I don't want to be the "bad neighbor", and want to accommodate as much as is reasonable, and have done everything they've asked thus far, but at this point I'm kind of resigned into the "not caring" mindset because I really can't see what harm they are causing.
if you can’t keep your animals in your yard, you are a bad neighbor no matter how much “don’t want to be” and you haven’t “done everything they’ve asked”
 

MrPink

Hatching
Nov 30, 2021
4
5
4
if you can’t keep your animals in your yard, you are a bad neighbor no matter how much “don’t want to be” and you haven’t “done everything they’ve asked”

Thanks for your help. But I guess you are right, the one suggestion they had that we didn't implement, which was to cover our 1 1/4 acres with something, simply isn't feasible. Which is why I come here... for advice. If you have none, then I don't really understand why you bothered posting.
 

Isadora

If at first you don't fricassee, fry, fry a hen
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Mar 29, 2021
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You could attempt to make the fence taller to see if that would discourage them, but guineas are capable of flying pretty high, so if they already know they can make it, I doubt it would be much of a deterrent.
And yes, clipping one wing is supposed to unbalance them so they can't fly as easily.
I have gotten lucky with my guineas. I have a 4-ft (at least, I think it's 4 ft, possibly 4.5) tall poultry netting that I run alongside the woods to keep them out of there. They run along it but I've never seen them fly over it. 🤷‍♀️
 

MrPink

Hatching
Nov 30, 2021
4
5
4
You could attempt to make the fence taller to see if that would discourage them, but guineas are capable of flying pretty high, so if they already know they can make it, I doubt it would be much of a deterrent.

We recently clipped their wings.... we know we missed one because we saw it literally fly over our house when I spooked it! lol :-/ We may have to try and attach some somewhat rigid fence to our 4ft fence... maybe get it to 6-6 1/2 ft in the main places they escape that theyd end up in other yard...
 

21hens-incharge

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BYC Staff
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Have you chatted with the neighbor to find out exactly what bothers them since it WAS ok but now isn't ok?


My advice...
A fully enclosed run with a roof (wire or solid) will allow you to contain them while they cannot be monitored. Free roaming can still happen as long as someone can be out with them to monitor/prevent their trespassing.
 

Mixed flock enthusiast

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May 21, 2018
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Sounds frustrating! So, can you slide scribe the sequence of events that results in the guineas flying the fence? I’m guessing that they can’t perch on the top, so they don’t fly from the ground to the fence itself? Is there a particular place that they like to cross? A tree that they fly to? Do they get spooked? How many leave the fence at once? I’m surprised that a few don’t fly over while a few stay behind, so that they all stay nearby calling to each other…

Some possible suggestions: Guineas don’t like to fly to places that they can’t see, and they are pretty dumb about flying directly over a fence just because they want to get to the other side. I’m wondering if you can use shade cloth to cover part of the fence to discourage them from flying over at that spot. That might work if there is one section that they prefer to fly over. You could help develop an aversion to a fence section as well with a motion controlled water sprinkler. Hanging scare eye balls near your neighbor’s area could help as well. Also, while you probably can’t get them completely flightless, it’s likely that you can remove enough feathers that flying over would be unlikely.
 

MrPink

Hatching
Nov 30, 2021
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5
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Thank you for your suggestions! My wife decided that the best option, given that "winter is coming" and any improvements will be difficult to implement for at least a few months without freezing ourselves, would be to sell our entire flock of guineas, so this as of this morning our 12 guineas are gone. This spring we'll go over our entire fence line to see where they may have been escaping and fix those areas if we find them-- barring that, I will definitely consider putting up some shade cloth before we raise any more.

I'm not sure what you mean by "scare eye balls" though? Regardless, in order to get to our neighbors they have to cross our (unfenced) parking area and cross our shared driveway, so have to cross probably 30-50 feet before they reach our neighbors area. I guess depending on what these eye balls look like, we could put them in our "parking" area.

My wife is sad, and has already commented on how much quieter our yard is already. :( Not only is the noise from the guineas gone, but apparently our other birds have remained silent as well.
 

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