Turkey/guinea housing

Heather J

11 Years
May 29, 2008
So i picked up three little poults on Saturday. The guy who hatched them called them red, white, and blues because he mated a blue slate to the bourbon red, and they are the sweetest little things ever. my husband wasn't all that thrilled with me adding new kinds of birds to my flock, but it was love at first sight (and how could he complain about me *accidentally* getting guineas in the May swap?)

I built this coop for my roosters.

And plan to do an identical one for my turkeys and guineas. I know I'll have to put in some kind of wind break and stretch a heat lamp for the turkeys once they are ready to move out of my brooding pen (way before they reach twelve weeks), but I wondered about other requirements. I intend to use some plastic or possibly wood to block off most of the wire-only end panels for winter, but wondered if guineas or turkeys were more or less hardy than my chickens. I close all of my windows in the coops at night if it's getting below 20 degrees for the night--at least in the one with my frizzles and silkies, and if it's going to get much colder than that for my LF. I'm trying to decide if I should treat these other birds like my LF, or what...

The way I oriented my A-frames blocks the worst of the weather, but allows plenty of air flow so they can keep cooler in the summer sun, since we're still trying to get trees established.
My only suggestion is that my turkeys both younger and adult REALLY prefer to roost HIGH and be able to see out. So the open wire ends work but the height and narrowness of the perch area really aren't for an adult bird's wingspan - think four feet wide and more for wingspan.

My perches for them are six feet or higher and the next one I'll allow for one at ten feet. At those heights I don't have any problem getting even adult turkeys to coop up for the night.

The more enclosed and lower the perches the harder it was to get them in.

I'm in TN so it doesn't get really really frozen for huge periods. Mine did well with their coop being two walls and two wire panels - I covered one wire panel with a tarp, and the other with heavy clear mylar plastic sheeting - again more LIGHT. They didn't need anything more and were comfortable all winter, despite a colder than normal winter here.
Thanks, I'll consider that when I work on the house. I know they really like to roost high, so I'll have to see what I can do. Unfortunately, it gets quite cold here in the winter (not like Wisconsin or anything, but we drop below 0 degrees for at least a few nights most winters and I've seen it below -20 a couple of times) so I'll definitely have to consider what happens if we have a really cold winter. I'm thinking about putting the roost in the middle in of their coop, cause I know guineas like it high too.

And the guineas are developing great, still no quitters! I'm totally stoked about them.
By the way, most heritage turkeys prefer to roost out of doors. Mine sleep on the top fence board, or in the trees. If I want them to go into the coop at night, I have to herd them in myself. Once adults, heritage turkeys are almost totally weather proof. The only time mine complain and want inside is when it is windy or sleeting. They don't mind freezing rain or snow at all.

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