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Why Guinea Fowl Love Ticks (and 7 Other Bugs They Eat)

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One of the best things about guinea fowl is that they are super tick hunters. These birds can zero in on ticks and take them out like nothing else. They love the little pests. People buy these birds for a lot of reasons, but a big one is to help with tick control.

guinea fowl in the farm

It seems like ticks are out of control all year these days. Lyme disease is on the rise in many parts of the country, and it seems like anytime a family sends their kids out to play in the woods, they come back with ticks. The worries are certainly enough to make parents concerned for their kids and even themselves if they enjoy being outdoors.

Owning guinea fowl is like having your own tick and insect vacuum on premises. They will search and destroy pretty much any insect they come across and have a special interest in anything that looks and tastes like a tick.

Raising Guineas to Keep the Ticks at Bay

People of all types love raising chickens. They raise them as family pets, count on them for delicious eggs, and even raise them for poultry meat. One of the nice things about chickens is that they’re rather tame.

You don’t need a ton of room on your property to house them. They’ll be just fine in a small coop in your backyard and roaming around your garden looking for a snack here and there. Kids can hold them and play with them, and it’s a good way to teach them responsibility.

If you’ve got a small yard, though, you probably aren’t all that worried about ticks. There’s only so much you can do.

Ticks love the woods the most, so if there aren’t a lot of trees in your yard, it’s unlikely you’ll have a tick problem. Knowing that, guinea fowl may not be the best idea.

However, if you’ve got a bit of land with fields or wooded areas where you are growing vegetables, have a barn, kids playing, etc., then you should be on the watch for ticks. Many people first notice tick issues when their dog comes back from running around outside during the day.

It’s a fantastic idea to raise guinea fowl whether you’ve already got a flock of birds on the property or if it’s your first bird. They are easy to raise and will be a joy to have at home or on the ranch.

7 Other Insects Guinea Fowl Love

People are starting to take notice of how helpful guinea fowl can be in eradicating insect problems. If you’re dealing with something like a mosquito infestation or you can’t seem to get rid of beetles in your garden, guineas could be the solution.

There’s a good chance that your guinea fowl will eat any insect that they come across. Still, there are some bugs that they particularly love eating. Here are seven insects guinea fowl will happily devour:

  1. Grasshoppers – If you hear your guineas fighting out back, there’s a good chance that they are fighting over a grasshopper or some other large insect that they’ve come across. They absolutely love grasshoppers. This is a massive benefit for property owners who are growing flower beds or small gardens because grasshoppers can be a real menace. They love chewing up leaves and stems before they can grow the way that you want them to.
  2. Fleas – Guineas will gobble up fleas very quickly. If you’ve got pets at home and you’re tired of seeing fleas crawl through their fur, then guineas are for you. Some owners reported seeing fleas disappear after only a few weeks of having guineas on the property. No fleas outside mean none will make it indoors on the back of your cat or dog. 
  3. Ants Ants seem like they thrive in any condition. No matter what steps you take to eradicate ants, they always find a way under rocks or into trees. If you have guineas, though, ants will become much less of a problem. They’ll attack ant hills and any ants that they see crawling around the grass. You’ll be happy you have the birds the next time you lay down on the grass and notice that you don’t have ants crawling all over you.
  4. Crickets – Crickets can be a real nuisance. They’re always making noise and, for some reason, always find a way into your basement. Guinea fowl will hunt down crickets and make them much less of a problem.
  5. Stink Bugs – In certain parts of the U.S., particularly on the east coast, stink bugs are a huge problem during the summer. Open a window for a few minutes to let the breeze in, and they’re sure to find a way in. Guineas will make your stink bug annoyances disappear in a matter of weeks.
  6. Caterpillars With the help of a flock of guinea fowl, you can keep caterpillars out of your garden and stop them from destroying your vegetables. There’s not much more frustrating than having all of your hard work disappear because bugs get in the garden.
  7. Snakes OK, this one’s not a bug, but it’s still a big deal to a lot of people. No one wants to deal with snakes, or even the thought of snakes, slithering around their yard or in the trees on their property. A big advantage of guineas is that they’ll even go after snakes, attacking them and fending them off.

They’re also great watchdogs. They’ll make a ton of noise if they spot something in the yard that’s a threat. As a result, snakes will steer clear of your property and won’t bother you anytime soon.

guinea fowl standing

Raising guineas can give you peace of mind knowing that ticks and other bugs won’t be a problem anymore. They are great birds that are a lot of fun to raise and care for. They can make a lot of noise, though, so be ready for some vocal interaction with these amazing animals!

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