On Labor Day let’s talk about working birds.
Guineafowl (Numididae) were domesticated for food but they work for us in other ways as well: They eat ticks and they’re great watchdogs.
When it comes to ticks, guineafowl perform a valuable service by reducing our exposure to Lyme disease. In the video below, a small flock is on tick patrol at Suffolk County Community College on Long Island, New York.
Their watchdog skills are important too, especially if a fox tries to get into the hen house. Guineafowl are quick to raise the alarm. They’re loud and they’re not shy about it.
But sometimes their idea of danger is not the same as ours. See the video below.
Guineafowl are so loud that it’s best to keep them where people don’t mind the noise.