Tell Me About Guineas

June Chick

Songster
Apr 12, 2016
98
146
126
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.
 

R2elk

*
Premium Feather Member
8 Years
Feb 24, 2013
32,878
159,714
1,641
Natrona County, Wyoming
My Coop
My Coop
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.
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.
 

Ghosty

Crowing
Jun 26, 2018
671
1,083
251
SW Missouri
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.
 

CapricornFarm

Chicken addict
Premium Feather Member
11 Years
Feb 1, 2010
74,372
265,341
1,807
Southern Virginia
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.
 

agedog1

Songster
Jul 15, 2018
75
176
124
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.
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
 

CJreef

Songster
8 Years
Apr 21, 2013
103
67
161
Pennsylvania
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
 

50-45-1

Free Ranging
13 Years
Feb 25, 2008
2,656
8,442
626
Northern Michigan (tip of the little finger area)
My Coop
My Coop
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!
 

New posts New threads Active threads

Top Bottom