Back in June of 2015, we received our first batch of guinea fowl. We really enjoyed these birds, and we especially enjoyed how many bugs they ate -- especially ticks!
Once you get guineas to "imprint" on your farm, they will most likely stay forever. This was the case for us. They would roam the entire farm during the day, and then, each evening, the guineas would come up to the house around dinner time to get some food, and then climb up and into their guinea house and roost for the night.
However, about one year after we had the guineas, we made the decision to move them out of our yard and the roost they occupied. The reason was two-fold. (1) They were getting into our flower beds and taking dust baths continually AND (2) The dogs had begun chasing them, and I couldn't work on training the dogs with guineas everywhere.
This proved to be a terrible decision. Without realizing it, a predator began picking off our guinea fowl. Because we weren't feeding them each evening anymore and because they weren't coming into our yard, we had no idea how many we had, and didn't realize their numbers had dwindled until they were completely eliminated from our farm.
At the time, we were okay that this had happened. The issue with the dogs and the garden made us almost relieved to not have the guineas.
But this year, we really started missing them again. Mostly we noticed how many more ticks we were finding on us, our WWOOFers, and the kids. So we decided to bring the guineas back.
We are going to set up their roost outside of our yard and try to keep them from coming into our yard and mingling with our flower beds and dogs. We have some ideas to keep predators at bay. And I am excited to hear the sounds of the guineas again. Many people say they are loud. And, okay, they are, but I find their sound incredibly "happy" and "uplifting." I miss it on the farm.
This past week, about thirty guinea fowl arrived as two-day-old little chicks. Here are some photos and videos sharing their arrival:
Leave it to Hannah to come outside in a sparkly shirt and a blanket because she couldn't find any pants.
Isaac holding one of the new guineas.
The adorable Haley -- our current WWOOFer.
And here is a video of their arrival