Problem-Solving with Guineas

There is a really fun book called, “Gardening with Guineas” by Jeannette S. Ferguson that my husband got me as a gift – as we inherited four guinea fowl with our property. In it, she describes basic care of these fowl as well as providing some insights into their behavior.

Our friend Kathy recently offered us a hatching of keets (baby guineas) that had been abandoned by their mother as eggs. She hatched them and gave us this group of seven. After our first hectic day with them, I decided Jeannette could probably write a new book called “Problem-Solving with Guineas”. We thought we might be able to use our now empty chicken tractor. Looks like a good idea, right?

Plenty of room, ventilation, a place for food and water…..and a lot of gaps through which to escape. Here they are inside, but this didn’t last long.

After chasing them around for awhile we re-located them to a large wire dog crate, after I covered a lot of it with chicken wire (while my husband kept an eye on the escaping keets).

Looks like it should work, right? Not. They escaped, even with the chicken wire on it. So, we re-located them yet again to a smaller dog crate. This worked – whew! I was running out of ideas.

Kathy gave us a couple little dog rug scraps which they really like to snuggle up on.

They grew fast and we were having their permanent home prepared for them. While we waited, the free-range adults moved into the front yard. We weren’t sure if they were keeping track of the chicks or worried about their territory being invaded by the new arrivals.

Their new home was finished enough to move them in today.

The front and back walls will give them shade, along with the covered roof. The wired sides will give them ventilation. We will be adding a roost, a hanging feeder and an automatic waterer. But, in the meantime, I moved their old home (they had actually moved back into the wire crate when they got too big to get out between the bars).

When I opened the door, it took them literally seconds to rush out to explore their new home.

They really enjoyed pecking away in the grass.

They will stay in this enclosure for quite awhile. Eventually, I will let them out during the day and hope that they return to it at night. They are busy growing some really beautiful feathers right now.

I want them to grow but hope they don’t get as big as my friend Kathy’s new birds.

She recently rescued two emu juveniles. I think I’ll stop with chickens and guinea fowl!

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Published in: on August 22, 2012 at 5:19 am  Leave a Comment  
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