dead guinea : LUSENET : Countryside : One Thread

This morning I found another guinea that had been grabbed either during the night or early dawn. I found it under a bush out in the pasture with head eaten but body still in tact. I want to know the type of predator that does this -- I have seen oppossums here (not much bigger than the guineas), but what other kind of predator places its food under a bush? Raccoons? Any other possibilities?

I hate to lose them -- that's two (females) within a month, ever since they left the coop and are roosting in the hemlock tree. As long as I could lock them up, they were safe. How these birds ever made it in the wild is beyond me.


-- TD Matheny (, February 24, 2002



-- Kate henderson (, February 24, 2002.

when you say "head eaten",, is part of the head there and chewed up,,or is the head missing? If its missing,, OWL ,, usually Great Horned, but ahve seen others do it also,, "hide them under a bush",, could it have fallen or flopped there,, or is it partially covered up, like it was put there on purpose? if it wasnt covered,, bet it fell or flopped there, if it was covered,,,, I would guess, something that wasnt very hungrary,, dog maybe

-- Stan (, February 24, 2002.

Hi TD, check on the website, Predator FAQ. That site is full of good info. As far as IDing the predator, it is common for owls to eat the head and neck and leave the rest of the bird. That said though I like to answer this by saying that it makes no difference what killed your bird. A list of predators that love to eat poultry is really long! The cure is to lock up your birds at night. I know nothing about guineas(other than they are unpleasant to look at and noisy, but also great eating and very good at helping keep insects etc under control) but I think maybe you might have to do this. I wouldn't dream of leaving my ducks out at night, though I know guineas are much more self-sufficient than chickens or ducks. Scroll down to the archives and you will find many discussions re predators of poultry and you will get more ideas there. Sure hope this helps and that you don't lose any more birds. There are links on The Poultry Connection site ( ) that will take you to Guinea raisers so you can open a dialog with some of them and of couse many people who post on the chicken and waterfowl forums there, also have Guineas. Good luck , LQ

-- Little Quacker (, February 24, 2002.

A wild guess is either an owl or a 'coon. Possums don't generally go after full grown birds. Chicks, eggs and garbage. Set live traps (Have-A-Heart) with peanut butter or canned dog food.

-- al (, February 24, 2002.

As a person that has spent lots of time and money raising chickens and gennies just to have them be killed mostly just as a way to pass the evening.I consider my self an expert. ITS COONS! if they ate what they killed it wouldn't be so bad but they like to eat the heads and then move on to the next one.They are sure cute but when you look around at all the carnage its not so hard to eliminate the current problem. If you know what I mean.

-- Corky Wolf (, February 24, 2002.

Owls take the heads. So do raccoons. Click Here For A Useful List

-- ~Rogo (, February 25, 2002.

Rogo, you know some of the neatest sites! I have been losing just my WHITE free-range bantam hens lately. I managed to catch a cat (kitty gone) and last night a possum (soon to be gone). I have seen big splotches of bird poop (hawk) where the dead birds were. I also caught on two occasions a long tailed hawk (set free). My son thought he saw a mink (we live near a large creek). So, I guess we have a whole array of predators!! Thanks again, Rogo!!

-- Gailann Schrader (, February 25, 2002.

Glad to help, Gailann. The HavAhart trap is good to use. It doesn't kill what it traps, so if it's a pet you can just let it out. If it's a predator, you can shoot it.

All my stock mingle on 30 acres. Fencing is only on the perimeter of the acreage, so between the large livestock, poultry and dogs, the HavAhart is the only kind of trap I can use.

-- ~Rogo (, February 25, 2002.

I was told by a trapper friend that it's easier to drown them. I have a large plastic barrel and that's what I have done with them.... Icky but effective. It doesn't ruin the trap either

-- Gailann Schrader (, March 01, 2002.

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