About Guniea hensgreenspun.com : LUSENET : Countryside : One Thread
Can anyone tell me anything about raising Guniea hens? Are they good for raising for meat?
-- Karen Smith (email@example.com), January 17, 2001
Won't get much meat and I think it will be dark .The are good bug control and watch dogs .They also tend to wonder and not come in at night.
-- Patty (firstname.lastname@example.org), January 17, 2001.
Yes they are raised for meat, if you like pheasant.They are pretty wild ,like to roost in trees,and make a heck of a ruckus when they see something.
I rather like them.
-- sharon wt (email@example.com), January 17, 2001.
HI! We've had guineas for years; can't imagine em not being around. They are incredibly noisy, so not good if you have close neighbors.
Great 'watch birds'; will let you know when **danger** is about....at least in their opinion....
They lay huge clutches of eggs rather late in the season, for up here in northern WI; our experience has been that we have no idea there even is a brooding going on until they one day march out with about 55 chicks...ever so cute....they are the tiniest babies..........then, we watch the little flock daily decrease...until there is almost none left........
So we did some observation....and discovered our hens are not mother- of-the-year types, although I'm sure they mean well...the little tiny babies get et up by even my cats, which are worthless at killin anything else, cuz they're small and lazy and spoiled.......so now we steal em away when we want some more, and brood em ourselves.
They really are wonderful for bug control; maybe we are on a property that is enchanted, which I often feel, but we are in the middle of reportedly lyme disease country, and although we are crawlin(?) with deer, we virtually never see even a single tick!
As for the meat, it tastes very like chicken....just kidding....very like peafowl, actually. Some restaurants in NY reportedly use them interchangedly. Like Patty said, its mostly dark, which I love, but some people like white meat ...whatever.....but like peafowl, which my daughter has raised for years; you have to harvest them quite young; they are very active and it doesnt take long for the meat to get tough.
HOpe this helps......I really think guineas are cool....they look like little vultures to me.....so ugly they're cute!
-- Earthmama (firstname.lastname@example.org), January 17, 2001.
Raised 4 in a confined area that I did not have to enter. I went into their area once, they flew around, hit the walls, all in panic mode! Raised them for Thanksgiving dinner, they were delicious!
-- westbrook (email@example.com), January 17, 2001.
I love mine, hatched them out under a banty two years ago. They have one major fault, though, if you garden...they LOVE onion plants.They walk right by ripe tomatoes, greens, etc. but they'll eat every onion in a big hurry. So we have to pen them up from mid march until the tops die. And they can be very noisy (my border collie herds them constantly, always to where ever I am, and when they're all gathered around your feet, it will actually hurt your ears!) Kathie
-- Kathie in Western Washington (firstname.lastname@example.org), January 17, 2001.
Karen: There is a lot of information on the web. I got mine from Mason Hatchery, Rt3 Box 343, Walters, Ok 73572 phone 580-875-3503 and they were good. Got several varieties. The old Pearl was the dominate variety with the white being at the bottom of the pecking order. The white ones have lighter meat. Couldn't stand the noise at first but after a few months rather liked them. Since they are native to dry desert, they never experienced dew, but in this country, the little ones die from getting wet in the morning grass. Best to take them away from the mothers and shut them up for 3 weeks.
-- Darrell Schlueter, Adams Co.,IL (email@example.com), January 17, 2001.
Our guineas were also hatched and raised by chickens. Their mommas taught them to come in to roost and so they do. I don't know if mine are just too inbred, or if the breed is not very bright. They can fly wonderfully, but are "stuck" sometimes for long periods if they walk up to a fence. Ours were also lousy mothers-lost them all, one at a time. I figured if they hatched chicks again, I would remove all but a couple and brood them myself.(Don't think I'd have the heart to take them all away after the bird sat for so long.)
-- mary,texas (firstname.lastname@example.org), January 17, 2001.
I saw several interesting posts on a sheep forum about raising guinea hens with sheep . They bond with the sheep and raise a racket if any predator comes near. Of course some were killed this way, but coupled with a good LGD (livestock guard dog) they were quite efficient. Kate in N.Y.
-- kate henderson (email@example.com), January 18, 2001.
Guineas aren't for everyone! They can sometimes get quite noisy ~ 'specially if there's an intruder (2 legged, 4 legged or vehicle) on 'their' property! Good watch dogs, but best not to have neighbors who are close by.
Guineas have to be trained to stay home or they'll wander ~ or fly ~ down the road and may never return. Once fully feathered, they should be penned for a full 6 weeks. Then open the gate and let them go out on their own. They will take their time leaving the pen and maybe a little longer to leave the pen area. They will return at dusk to roost in their pens.
If not trained to the pen, they will roost in the trees and can be picked off by owls and hawks.
Guineas are ground nesters. I have large covered cat litter boxes lined up on the ground on one side of each pen. I toss grass hay in the boxes and the girls arrange it to their liking. This also works well for my chickens.
Guineas can be kept with chicken hens, but not roosters ~ they'll try to kill them.
Guineas are favored by folks who live in Lyme Disease areas, as they'll eat up all the ticks on the property, and anything else that crawl by them!
The first 2 weeks of life, the keets should not be allowed to get wet (like walking on grass that's wet) 'cause it'll kill them.
Some prefer to have a chicken hen hatch the eggs, since not all Guinea hens are good moms.
I don't garden, but many love the Guineas for the garden. They don't scratch like the chickens and disturb the earth, they just go down the rows and remove the insects from the plants.
Guineas are prepared like pheasant for eating.
-- ~Rogo (firstname.lastname@example.org), January 18, 2001.
We enjoy our Keets . And they are good eating as well .
-- Lee (email@example.com), January 18, 2001.
Go to www.frit'sfarm.com Everything you ever wanted to know about guineas, and it's fun and cute, too.
-- melina b. (firstname.lastname@example.org), January 18, 2001.
Gunieas aren't as noisey after the first year. We also got them to cut down on ticks but in the process also found that they cleared the barn of flies. We raise pigs which sleep in a pen in the barn and have access to an outside pen. Flies were always a problem but last year the gunieas had access to the barn and the pigpen and there were NO flies!
-- Gayle (email@example.com), January 18, 2001.