Yesterday we noticed a lone guinea wandering about our yard, seemingly attracted to our chickens. I didn’t think much of it but was perhaps a little hopeful, since I’d occasionally thought of getting a few guinea keets on Craig’s List. Guineas are supposed to be fantastic for bug-control. I had heard they could be a little noisy, and then in a sudden moment, experience confirmed that fact and taught me two things. 1) “A little noisy” is a serious understatement and 2) I am no longer interested in owning guineas. Ever.
After spending much of that afternoon and evening with us, he paid us another visit early this morning, and I could not believe the intensity of his call, even though he was way out at the chicken coop, perched atop the run. I must say, it’s an interesting way to wake up.
In my half-dazed state, I kept wondering what that incessant and obnoxious screeching, scratching, scraping, machine gun noise was, and then it dawned on me that our feathered
friend fiend had returned. A short time later, as Hannah reluctantly roused from sleep, she kept pleading, “Pleeeease stop that scraping sound,” thinking it was one of us making some very inconsiderate noises too early in the morning.
Guinea vocalizations are unbelievably LOUD as they reverberate through the neighborhood. If you’ve never heard guinea fowl, watch the following video. In order to get the full effect, you’ll have to turn up your volume as high as it will possibly go and place one ear directly against the speaker as you click “play.” This is what it sounds like if there’s a guinea in your back yard waking you up in the morning. And one guinea calling is only slightly less annoying than a whole flock of them you hear on the video.
See what I mean?
This guinea refuses to be thwarted. Every time he came to call today (I lost count), the kids would dash outside, grab a big stick, holler the rebel yell and chase him as fast as they could to scare him away into the woods, but that would only last a short while until he returned. Still, it was a fun show. I’m sure the neighbors thought so too.
I read online that guineas do not like to be alone. So I’m wondering how this one has come to be alone, and I assume he likes the birdly companionship he finds out at the chicken coop, as he looks down on our chickens through the deer netting atop the run.
The chickens to not share his affection, however—particularly our rooster. At first they were understandably rattled by this newcomer, especially during his raucous greetings. After several visits, they seemed to be rather nervously resigned to his presence (as were we). And now they’re a bit more comfortable with him around, although still cautious.
I wouldn’t mind him staying if he could simply be quiet (especially in the morning), but guineas apparently don’t speak that language. Does anyone have a brilliant idea of enticing him away? Our neighbors down the road have chickens too; why can’t he go stay there? We can’t catch him and don’t want to shoot him (in case we find out he belongs to someone around here.)
So bring on your best ideas and/or off-the-wall advice! Any guinea experts out there? We need some help!
Linked to Homestead Barn Hop