The guinea hens are not good at taking care of their little babies/keets. So learning about raising guinea fowl babies will be helpful for you, especially if you are willing to raise the guineas from keets. Guinea keets are actually very delicate. So you will have to put in some work for raising guinea fowl babies.
Sometimes the guinea hens will abandon a nest, even after the hen has gotten broody and spent several days and nights sitting on the eggs. You need to move the eggs to an incubator immediately if you notice that a nest has been abandoned. Although if you have chickens, then a broody hen can also be used for hatching the eggs and raising the keets.
The incubation period for the eggs of the guinea fowl is between 26 and 28 days. You will need to take care for the babies until they have fully developed feathers and are strong enough to hold their own with the rest of the flock.
Guide for Raising Guinea Fowl Babies (Keets)
As the guinea keets are very delicate, so there are lots of tasks involved for raising guinea fowl babies. Here we are describing more about raising guinea fowl babies.
Make a Good & Comfortable House
First of all, you need to create a safe home for the keets. You need to provide them with enough space for preventing prampling. Move the keets to a larger house if they appear to be overcrowded. Initially it is best to keep them in a container with solid sides (such as a sturdy cardboard box), because the keets can escape through very fine wire mesh.
For the first week or sometimes more, keep the box lined with clean paper towels. And then gradually switch to wood shavings. Don’t line the box with newspaper as the keets need a textured surface for preventing themselves from slipping and injuring their legs.
Proper temperature management is another important part of raising guinea fowl babies. You will need to keep their environment warm initially. Use a heating lamp for maintaining proper temperature in their container. For the first week, keep the inside temperature at 95 degrees Fahrenheit. Then lower the temperature at the rate of 5 degrees Fahrenheit each week until it reaches normal temperature/outside temperature.
Light is very important for raising guinea fowl babies. You can keep the light at one corner of the brooder box. This will help to move the keets to a cooler part of the box if they get too hot, or get closer to the light if they get too cold. You can easily change the position of the light by observing their behavior. The keets will move freely and equally inside the box if they feel comfortable.
Feeding the Keets
Always try to provide the keets enough fresh feeds. You can feed your keets with store bought crumbles food for their first few months of age (pellets are not too good for the keets, use crumbles). The starter mix for the guinea fowl keets should contain about 24-28 percent protein for their first 5 weeks. And then gradually switch to a mixture containing between 18 and 20 percent protein for the next 3 weeks. You can hand feed the keets for taming them and also for getting them used to you.
Supply Adequate Clean Water
Like many other poultry birds, water is a must for raising guinea fowl babies. So ensure a steady source of clean, fresh and warm water for your keets. You should avoid giving them cold water, as the keets can’t tolerate cold water. Provide water in a shallow bowl filled with marbles at first, as the newborn keets are susceptible to drowning.
Keep Their Environment Clean
Always try to keep their environment as clean as possible. Also clean their feeding and watering pots frequently.
These are the common ways for raising guinea fowl babies. Good caring is the key to success, so always try to take good care of your birds. May God bless you!