Not roosting?

Discussion in 'Guinea Fowl' started by extraordinaryfowl, Sep 30, 2012.

  1. extraordinaryfowl

    extraordinaryfowl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 6, 2011
    Lancaster, PA
    My guineas have no problem hopping out of the coop into their run in the morning (the door is large, maybe two and a half feet off the ground and by no means obstructed) but every night they all bed down underneath the coop or at the other end of the run and don't go in. I have seen at least five of them in and out of the coop during the day, and have tried putting them all in before dark, putting their evening feed in there (which they don't find until I put them in) but nothing seems to work. It has been over two weeks now. I always thought from what people said guineas even more then chickens like to get off the ground at night, but mine won't jump up in their coop. It is getting tiring catching and putting 30 wild loud guineas in every night.
     
  2. inthesticks

    inthesticks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 24, 2012
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    I myself only have 4 guinea fowl that live in with my chickens and ducks, I was having a similar issue where they would roost on a fence in their area rather than go into the coop (I have a ramp that goes to the coop door) I would have to grab them all(along with some chickens) or nudge them off the fence and herd them over to the coop. I have read that guineas do not like going into dark places, so I set up a tiny night light near the doorway of the coop that turns on when it gets dark enough. ( it is a dim light and one of the guineas likes roosting over it which further dims it) I do not think that it is enough light to mess with any of their systems-so far so good-

    Now I do not have to herd any birds anywhere in the evening, they wonder about the property then once the sun starts going down they all go back into their fowl yard & into the coop.

    Once they all start laying, if the light becomes an issue, I will try and do something a little more high tech like timers or a remote that I would use from my house.

    Good luck with the 30 of them!
     
  3. PeepsCA

    PeepsCA Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Big Oak Valley, CA
    How old are your Guineas? Guineas like routine, but you have to help them establish one, or as you already know they will establish their own. You could temporarily wire off the area under the coop that they are going under to sleep at night, until they get with the routine of going in each night. Consistently giving them a treat like millet or a wild bird seed mix containing a lot of millet once they are in the coop each evening, (using the sun going down as a visual cue for the birds to understand it's time to go in) helps condition/train them to going in, and getting a treat each evening (at approximately the same time) gives them something to look forward to. I only feed that particular treat once they are back inside tho, no where else. I usually close my coops/pens once everybody is out to free range so that the birds cannot come and go as they please (they all have a water source outside as well as in the coop)... I find that closing the coops/pens up each day really encourages them to want to go back in each evening when I open the doors/gates back up (it creates coop and feeder separation anxiety... and they are looking forward to their treat). Also you could try using a bale of straw in front of the door, instead of the ramp so they can just hop up... navigating the ramp at dusk may be what's intimidating them, so you'll want to start getting them in before it's so dark that they choose to bed down under the coop or lay on the ground in the pen. The light on in the coop (at least until everybody is in at night) is also a good idea... Guineas are blind in the dark, and won't move around much at all if they can't see. (I always get my birds in before dark, but I do use a strand of red LED rope lights in my coops that are on a timer... it gives them just enough light to see if they get bumped off the perch or spooked for some reason. They can't break the lights, and there's no fire hazard... plus they are inexpensive to run).
     
  4. JLeigh

    JLeigh Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 19, 2012
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    I use "herding sticks" to help guide my guineas where I want them to go. I NEVER EVER touch the guineas with the sticks, but use them as extra long "arms". They are much much easier to herd than chickens and PeepsCA is right - if you establish the routine for going in the coop at a certain time each evening, they'll eventually do it themselves (most of the time).

    Then I give them their treats, like PeepsCA wrote. They're creatures of habit and that can be exploited :).
     
  5. jbirds2012

    jbirds2012 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 14, 2012
    paicines, ca.
    thanks for asking, i learned something :)
     

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