Tell Me About Guineas

Discussion in 'Guinea Fowl' started by June Chick, Nov 3, 2018.

  1. June Chick

    June Chick Songster

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    Alright. A little while back, a fox got 4 of my chickens, and just last night, a cat somehow managed to get my 3 chicks.
    I've heard Guineas can make great additions to the flock and are on constant alert for dangers, and get LOUD if something is out of place.

    Tell me ALL about Guineas. What they eat, average lifespan, roaming habits, mating/breeding habits (are they like geese and mate for life, or chickens and a male rules, or ducks and males are just straight-up jerks when it comes to breeding), brooding/hatching habits (are they sneaky and try to hide nests?), specific care, tell me EVERYTHING.
     
    CapricornFarm likes this.
  2. R2elk

    R2elk Free Ranger

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    Read Raising Guinea Fowl 101 and pay particular attention to posts made by @PeepsCA

    Guineas need more room than chickens need. Guineas are a flock bird and do best in large groups of guineas.
     
    agedog1, CapricornFarm and June Chick like this.
  3. Abriana

    Abriana Spicy Sugar Cookie

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    Guineas will, if not rigorously trained, wander away from home and become wild guineas. They are a lot of work to keep close to home and to train to go into the coop at night. They are free spirits!
     
  4. Ghosty

    Ghosty Songster

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    They make a lot of noise, but I wouldn't consider them a watchdog. Just today mine were screeching up a storm for gosh knows why. In fact, it makes you wonder if they will draw predators.
    Fortunately, my birds have a lot of shelter and there is better hunting elsewhere nearby in the fields around.
    They are blind and defenseless at night. They have run off predators in groups, but could just as easily be eaten like the rest. I would attack the predator problem with a good dog, or attack the predators directly. A game cam maybe or some traps at night.
     
  5. CapricornFarm

    CapricornFarm Chicken Tender

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    Guineas will make you laugh, cover your ears, and wonder how they could possibly be so stupid and survive. They will make a secret nest if they get the chance. The key to getting them to roost in the shelter is build a tall shelter and keep them confined there for at least a month or more before you let them out. Put the feed and water in the shelter so they keep coming back.
     
  6. June Chick

    June Chick Songster

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    Yeah, guineas definitely aren't for me... thanks for your responses!
     
  7. agedog1

    agedog1 Chirping

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    So right. However mine are VERY SMART and know how to fool me - they follow me on long forest walks like I am their "Pied Piper". Mine go in their shelter every afternoon - I use White millet - they know when I call Guinea, Guinea, Guinea - in a sing song tone they come running for the Millet
     
  8. CJreef

    CJreef Songster

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    We've had two guineas for a couple years. A third one strayed from the group one night and was missing in the morning. They were not pinioned (clipped wings) so they fly very well and because of that have escaped the foxes. They usually come home at dusk and share the roost with the chickens. On occasions they have stayed out for the night but fly up and roost up high in our maple tree. I don't worry when the tree is in leaf but they have managed to escape the owls on a few nights when the tree was bare. Now that it is cold they are happy to go to the barn to sleep.

    I don't think they are nearly as smart as the chickens but they are so funny and LOUD. People who complain about roosters crowing don't know how good they have it.

    They are very good at eating insects and seem to relish ticks in particular which was the main reason we got them. We live in an area infested with deer ticks and my husband has had lyme disease several times. We have had very few ticks since getting the guineas. This year my husband only had one, the dog one and I had two.

    They eat the same food that the chickens eat.

    When they see me or hear my voice in the morning they come running to get their goodies, mealworms or fly larvae.

    They love to sit on the railings off the balcony and the porch. They are curious and when on the roof of the extension come and look at us through the kitchen window.

    P1010486_1 lavender guineas.jpg P1010486_1 lavender guineas.jpg
     
  9. The only thing that will solve your night time preditor problems, is a tightly secure coop.
    Doors closed and latched, not even a mouse sized hole anywhere, no loose boards and hardware cloth, not chicken wire.
    You can trap or exterminate your current preditors but there will always be more headed your way.
    Good luck!
     

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