wing clipping and roosting

Discussion in 'Guinea Fowl' started by LizaBlue, Sep 12, 2011.

  1. LizaBlue

    LizaBlue Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm afraid that if I clip my guineas wings, they won't be able to get up on roosts. How high will they be able to jump after clipping? They have become too hard to contain, terrorize my chickens, and give me all sorts of trouble at bedtime. We have 2 fenced in acres, a coop, and an open barn - you'd think that would be enough room for 9 chickens, 2 turkeys, and 6 guineas, but noooo. Since the turkeys and guineas think they are family, we call them "turguineas," and they run the chickens out of the lot, then go to the other end, where the guineas jump the fence. Sunday, they came out, crossed the street, came up around the corner, across our yard, and into the garage just to mock me, then, just to make sure I was late for church, went around the other side of our house, past our backyard, through our neighbor's yard, and halfway around the warehouse in the lot behind us! Although I enjoy calls from my neighbors, having them phone from their car telling me the guineas are in the road - again - is not my idea of a pleasant conversation. I've gotten so frustrated at the hassle of trying to get them in the coop, that last night I left all the turguinea clan out, then worried all night about them catching cold. Hubby and I went up late and checked on them, only to find them cozy and sound, perched 4 1/2 feet up on an old wood hay feeder. This morning? Out in the road again. We're putting up a 6ft. tall fence in the back, but the turguineas are so cruel to the chickens, I don't want to put them back there.

    Sorry, got off subject with my rant. I want to clip their wings so they can't fly over a 4 ft tall fence, but I'm afraid if I do that, they won't be able to roost to be safe at night. How low must a roost be for them to be able to reach it after clipping?
     
  2. stoopid

    stoopid Chicken Fairy Godmother

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    Aug 3, 2011
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    I think clipping a Guineas wings may make it more prone to getting in trouble, or out of trouble. They love to go in the road, and clipped, they may not be able to get out of a bad situation fast enough. This is a hard one to answer...
     
  3. PeepsCA

    PeepsCA Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I am not at all a fan of clipping wings (unless you can keep them 100% protected from predators and other harm)... and clipping their wings will not keep the birds inside a 4' tall fence since they already know they can get over it, they will still scale it and go where they want. Once their wings are clipped they have way less ability to escape predators (and get out of the way of cars). If you do decide to clip wings, I would not recommend letting them roost outside at all. In the coop you could provide graduated roosts (starting at about 2 feet high) so they can hop from roost to roost to get up high.

    IMO you (and the birds) are better off if you completely separate them from your chickens, put a top on the Guinea/Turkey run and only free range them while you can be out there with them to "baby sit" them to keep them from getting in the road. I've trained my Guineas to stay within my 10 fenced acres, (in my case it wasn't the road that was the issue, it's the predators and stray dogs on the outside of my fence line), but it took a lot of time and effort on my part... baby sitting and chasing them back in whenever they went over the fence. They eventually learned (took about 6 months), but I was determined not to let the habit of leaving my land become one that I wasn't able to correct.
     
  4. LizaBlue

    LizaBlue Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Wee Acres
    Thanks for the answers/opinions. I'm lucky enough to live in a very low traffic area, as even the people who live on my street prefer to go the other way around. Hard to explain why without seeing the area. It's a subdivision and everyone else has a "no nuisance animal" clause in their warranty deed, so there isn't much problem with dogs running loose. Our properties, at the head of the street, weren't part of the deal, so we can basically do whatever state law allows in the animal department, since we're not even in the city either. They haven't been streetwalking in a while, I think they were just getting back at me because I've been cracking down on them lately. Every morning, I make an area of the barn a "chicken only zone" so they can get at least one good meal in peace while I stand guard. Guess the turguineas wanted me to know that they can go anywhere they want and no mere human can stop them!

    I kinda figured clipping bird wings was like declawing a cat: they'll just find another way to do what nature tells them too. If I can't make them a separate pen when we get the fence up, I guess we'll have a real big Thanksgiving - hate that, since I've started finding guinea eggs [​IMG]
     

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