What You Need to Know About Guinea Fowl Killing Snakes
Snakes in your yard can be a nuisance, especially if you have small livestock or poultry running around. Poisonous snakes can be dangerous not only to your animals but also to your family members and friends. Guinea Fowl has a reputation for being great alert birds, but you may be wondering if they can take care of your snake problems as well.
Do guinea fowl kill snakes? Guinea fowl are known to kill snakes that intrude into their living area. They tend to kill smaller snakes and garter snakes, or simply peck and play with them. Although they may not kill larger snakes, they can certainly deter them from coming into their living area.
Guinea fowl are great birds to have around to guard your barnyard and perform pest control for your lawn and garden. To learn more about guinea fowl and how they can keep snakes away from your property, keep reading!
How Can Guinea Fowl Keep Snakes Out of Your Yard?
If you tend to deal with snakes invading your property during the spring and summer months, you may want to consider investing in some guinea birds. Guinea fowl are great at ridding your property of snakes and keeping them away. Here are some ways guinea fowl can be great snake control:
Guinea Fowl Kill Snakes
On occasion, guinea fowl will kill snakes. They are more likely to kill small snakes or garter snakes that tend to appear like worms. When a guinea finds a snake, they will usually peck at it and even eat it.
Snakes can be notoriously difficult to spot, as they tend to blend in with their surroundings and stay close to the ground. Guinea fowl are used to spotting out bugs dwelling in the grass that they can feast on, so they can easily find snakes when they slither onto your property.
Guinea Fowl Peck and Play With Snakes
One reason many people love guinea fowl is because of their quirky personalities. Guineas love to inspect anything out-of-the-ordinary or new to their area. This is how they usually end up getting into a tiff with a snake. A group of guineas will surround a snake and take turns pecking at it and playing with it.
Guinea Fowl Cause A Commotion
A flock of guinea fowl is caused a “confusion,” and rightfully so. Guineas aren’t like chickens who can mind their own business and cause relatively no commotion. Guinea fowl stick together as a group and can be very loud. They make great alarm birds since they’ll squawk and wail at the sign of something new or different. I once knew a guinea bird who would squawk anytime a stranger pulled up on the property.
Snakes hate commotion; they prefer quiet and calm instead of loud squawking and birds running around everywhere causing a ruckus. This behavior alone can be enough to deter snakes from coming onto your property. Snaked depend on calm atmospheres and resting animals that they can easily catch as their prey.
Other Reasons You Should Get Guinea Fowl
There are many other reasons you should own guinea fowl besides the fact that they kill snakes. They can be a valuable addition to your barnyard in a number of ways. Here are some reasons why you should consider purchasing some guinea fowl:
Snakes may not be the only pests you face throughout the year. Livestock can be attacked by ticks, fleas, and lice while crops can be destroyed by ladybugs, beetles, and grasshoppers. Guinea fowl feed on just about any outdoor pest you could think of. These birds can drastically alter the pest population in your area, saving your livestock from the nuisance of parasites and saving your crops from being destroyed.
While chickens may also eat bugs and pests, they can also create a bit of a mess in our yard or garden. Chickens like to dig in the dirt and give themselves dirt baths, which can leave noticeable bumps and dips in your yard. Guineas will eat pests and be relatively neat and tidy while doing it, leaving your garden intact so your fruits and veggies can flourish.
Livestock and Poultry Alert Animal
While guineas may not be able to fight off wild dogs, coyotes, are big cats, they can alert your livestock and poultry to potential danger. As mentioned earlier, guineas will squawk and wail at strangers and anything that may be seen as a potential threat. Usually, their loud and high-pitched siren call is enough to deter predators from coming any closer.
Guineas are free-range birds who tend to band together and stick around livestock or other poultry, which can make them a great alarm for other animals. Guinea Fowl made it on our list of best livestock guardian animals. To learn more, check out our article What Are the Best Livestock Guardian Animals?
If you’re looking for a low-maintenance bird, look no further than guinea fowl. For the most part, guineas take care of themselves. They find food by eating bugs and they like living outside rather than being shut in a coop at night. This means that you don’t have to purchase feed or spend time cleaning out roosting boxes and coops.
Since guineas tend to be more free-range and nest in trees and hard-to-reach areas, it can be difficult to collect eggs each day. Guineas are actually pretty good at flying, which can enable them to roost out of reach of predators. Guineas are also extremely fast, which makes them great escape artists.
They Lay Eggs
People may argue that the downfall to guineas is that they don’t lay eggs like chickens; however, this isn’t the case. Guineas lay eggs, they just usually lay them out of reach. If you want to gather eggs from your guineas, the best thing to do is to train your guineas to roost in a chicken coop. While it may be against their natural instinct, they can be taught to do it and will eventually return to the coop each night to rest and lay eggs.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do Guinea Fowl Fly?
While guinea fowl can’t fly thousands of miles like geese, they can fly up to 400 – 500 ft at a time. They can also fly up into trees and on top of barns. This is something to keep in mind when purchasing guineas. This type of bird prefers to be free-range, and they can fly out of most enclosures. If you plan on keeping them in a more enclosed area, you’ll need to be sure to put a covering over the enclosure so that the guineas don’t escape.
Do Guinea Fowl Scratch Gardens?
Many people choose guineas over chickens since the guineas won’t destroy their gardens like chickens will. While chickens may dig to look for food or to create a dirt bath, guineas don’t scratch or dig up gardens. They have good eyesight and can spot bugs on the ground and on leaves. This can make guinea fowl your garden’s best friend since the guineas remove harmful bugs that may destroy your plants and crops.
Do Guinea Fowl Survive at Night?
Since guineas don’t naturally like to go in coops, you may be wondering how well guinea fowl survive the night. I’m not going to lie, even though guineas make great alert birds and they can fly up high and run really fast, they seem to have a knack for getting snatched by predators. That said, some guineas are better at surviving than others.
The way most guineas survive the night is by finding a safe place to roost. I’ve seen a guinea outlast all the other guineas because it roosted in the rafters of the barn compared to outdoors and close to the ground. If you want to give your guineas a fighting chance, you can teach them to accept a coop that they can be secured in for the night.
Another type of bird that may not initially stay in a coop is a duck. To learn more about whether ducks need coops, check out our article Do Ducks Need a Coop: What You Need to Know.
I hope this article was helpful in learning whether or not guineas kill snakes. Did you know that not only do we have articles about poultry but we also have articles on livestock? Check out a few of my livestock articles about goats here: