And Guinea topic: We had guineas for a long time but the older
they got, the more alarmist they became. A mob of birds
screaming at shadows (and they CAN scream) was more than I
could handle. These guys lived 12+ years, too, very hardy.
Otherwise, they were great in with the rest of the poultry.
Funny story. We had an insurance sales rep come by to talk to us
about farm insurance. He had some 'trainees' with him. The
guineas dutifully screamed their 'Hello', then ran off to play guinea
games. The trainees were probably overwhelmed by everything
anyhow, so didn't ask questions. As they conducted their
business. they kept craning around to watch the guineas out the
window. The birds were playing 'tag', sliding down the barn roof,
and running around to the opposite side to fly up to do it again and
again. Finally, someone asked me WHAT ARE THOSE BIRDS,
AND WHAT ARE THEY DOING? (I guess it was unusual to see 23
birds falling off the barn roof over and over again.)
If you raise the babies, I don't think they can stand the regular
medicated chick starters, I can't remember. Game bird starter is
usually safer for turks and keets.
A guinea might take over a chicken 'wallow' for a dust bath but they
won't scratch up the (established) garden nearly as bad as
chickens do. They do travel in packs, so if one does something,
they all do it. So, if they trample over newly planted ground, it won't
be just one guinea, it'll be the whole mob.
Taste wise, they're all dark meat, and seem to have more flavor
than chicken. Killing one is an art form though. I've actually wrung a
neck on a guinea and had it get up and scream at me and run off!
Years later the only way I could tell that bird from the rest? His
neck was a little longer and he was not trusting around people.
Can't say as I blamed him. They say they can dodge bullets and I
believe them! (Needless to say, we ate very few guineas around
We're guinea-less here now, and if I were to get screamers again,
I'd go back to peafowl instead of guineas as I'm not apt to eat either
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