Helmeted Guinea Fowl

STATUSLeast Concern

COMMON NAME (SCIENTIFIC NAME)Numida meleagris

DIETOmnivorous: insects, seeds, berries, greens.

RANGEFound throughout most of Africa, except for desert and heavy forest region

HABITATScrubland, savanna, and woodland.

Helmeted Guinea Fowl

About: These birds have a wattle on each side of their beak and a horny “helmet” on top of their brightly colored head. They have a bead-like design on their feathers which consists of tiny white dots on a dark background.

These talkative birds have a variety of calls, but are most often recognized by their loud cackling alarm call. Farmers often raise flocks of these birds as alarms for predators, and as excellent natural insect control.

Life Cycle/ Social Structure These noisy birds usually live in large groups. In the wild there have been as many as 2,000 guinea fowl roosting together in a tree. They are capable of flight, but prefer to spend most of their time on the ground. In some places, like forests, they will roost in trees at night. The large flocks break up into smaller groups during breeding season. Females incubate 12-15 eggs for 24-30 days. The precocious young find their own food after hatching.

Predators: Hawks, owls, and other small and medium carnivores.