Guinea fowl Facts

Guinea fowl Facts
Guinea fowl is medium-sized bird that belongs to the family Numididae. There are 6 species of guinea fowl that are native to Africa. Guinea fowls can be found in jungles, forests, grasslands, scrublands, savannas and semi-deserts. These birds are equally well adapted to the life in the lowlands and on the altitude of 9800 feet. Guinea fowls are valuable source of meat, eggs and feathers since the ancient times. Some species of guinea fowl, such as helmeted guinea fowl, have been domesticated and they can be found on the farms all over the world today.
Interesting Guinea fowl Facts:
Guinea fowl can reach 16 to 28 inches in length and 1.5 to 3.5 pounds of weight.
Guinea fowl has bare head and neck while the rest of the body is covered with dark grey or black feathers with small white dots.
Guinea fowl has short, stout bill, bulky body, short, rounded wings, thick legs with large toes and powerful claws, and short tail.
Guinea fowl is ground-dwelling bird. It spends most of the time by searching food hidden in the ground.
Guinea fowl is active early in the morning and late in the afternoon. It rests during the hottest part of the day and eliminates excess heat via its bare head and neck.
Guinea fowl eats different types of worms, insects, reptiles, spiders, berries, seed, tubers, roots and grains. It can survive prolonged period of time without water.
Guinea fowl often walks behind herds of large animals and monkeys and collects food they left behind. It plays important role in the control of ticks, flies and scorpions in the wild.
Guinea fowls are social animals that live and roost in smaller or larger flocks. They walk in a single line and imitate behavior of the leader of the group.
Guinea fowl is strong flyer, but it prefers to run when it needs to escape from predators.
Natural enemies of guinea fowls are wild cats, wolves, snakes, crocodiles and humans.
Mating season of guinea fowls takes place at the end of the rainy season.
Guinea fowls are monogamous birds. Formed couples can last for a lifetime or per mating season.
Female lays 8 to 15 eggs that hatch after incubation of 24 to 30 days. Only female takes part in the incubation of eggs, while male guards the nest. Chicks, known as keets, fledge at the age of 4 weeks. Two-months-old guinea fowls are ready to return to the flock with their parents.
Young guinea fowls reach sexual maturity at the age of 2 years. Females produce large number of eggs due to numerous predators of nest (such as cats, dogs and mongooses). Only 50% of eggs manage to "survive" incubation period.
Guinea fowl can survive 10 to 20 years in the wild.

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