We adore our guinea fowl. They make us laugh and they make us cry. Sometimes they seem to be smart and other times they are just plain stupid! They work on a one brain many bodies mentality: so where one goes the rest follow but that one leader is forever changing...getting confusing...well that is guinea fowl for you!
They are essentially grazers and constantly roam looking for bugs, insects and nipping off greens and seed heads. They are not big scratchers like chooks so the lawn stays intact yet if they come across a dusty dirt spot they relish a dust bath. During the non breeding season they mass together and live as a group of males and females. In spring they will pair of in twos or small groups and hang out romantically on our front lawn and in our paddocks all breeding season.
They are a delight to watch. The hens will all lay in the same nest/s and if the eggs are not secretly removed will go broody and sit on sometimes up to 40 eggs. They are dedicated broodies but useless mothers. I think they have good intentions but the keets are just not strong enough to cope with the cold, damp and the distances traversed. So keets are best raised in brooder boxes and released back to free range when old enough. We keep both the pearl grey and lavender varieties and have pied in both colours. They are prolific layers of small hard shelled eggs with a round and a pointy end. The hens lay from September to March. Guinea fowl also make an excellent table bird; succulent and tender, similar to eating a gamebird. Guinea fowl are native to Africa. They are often used for tick control. They are low maintenance, hardy birds to keep and do best free range.