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Sexing Guinea Fowl

It is very difficult to determine the sex of guinea fowl. Although guinea keets (babies) are naturally loud from birth, the distinctive call that most easily determines the gender isn't full developed until they are well over two months of age.

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The only way to tell is to listen the guinea's call.

 At 2 months of age and older, a guinea will emit either a one or two syllable call.

The female emits a two syllable call, which, according to folklore sounds like "come-back, come back."

A male emits a one syllable call that sounds like "chit chit chit chit."

Determining the difference is easiest when you can hear both sexes in a group and are seriously starting to ‘court’ when they are about 8 months old. Separating them and ensuring you have the right one locked up is quite another thing. Tracking and catching a hen as she lays eggs in a hidden nest is the only other sure way to know you have a female.

Domestic birds at least, are notable for producing extremely thick-shelled eggs that are reduced to fragments as the chicks hatch, rather than leaving two large sections and small chips from where any chick has removed the end of the egg.

Domesticated guinea hens are not the best of mothers, and are easily scared off a nest abandoning thier eggs. However nothing is prettier than a hen scratching with a clutch of naturally hatched keets pecking about her stockings. The chicks are variously coloured and rapid wing growth enables them to flutter onto low branches barely a week after hatching.

A challange to raise to maturity, once safely there adult guineafowl live as long as 12 years.