Guinea Fowl eggs not fertile

Asked July 22, 2019, 10:14 AM EDT

I have 4 male and 4 female guinea fowl in a pen together. All of them get along without fighting. I collect 4 eggs regularly everyday. I put them in my incubators every 3 days for hatching. I am lucky if 1 or 2 of the eggs are actually fertile. I don't understand what the problem is. They are all around 1 year old so age is not a factor. Help!

Outside United States

5 Responses

How do you know they are infertile? Is it possible there is a problem with the incubator and you have a lot of early deads?
Guinea fowl do usually mate in pairs but they usually try to locate a place of their own. How much space do you have for each pair?
Do you actually see any mating going on?
What are you feeding - could it be a nutritional problem?

I should have provided better information.
I candle the eggs at 7 and 10 days. Normally there are 12 eggs every 3 days. At 7 days usually there are 1 to 2 eggs with growth and regularly those eggs will hatch. I pick up the eggs every evening and store in a cool spot in a egg tray with the pointy end down. I mark the eggs with pencil not pen. I have never had a fertile guinea egg die in the shell before hatch. I have had a few blood rings - maybe 1 out of 50 eggs. My coop is 3m x 3m enclosed in a chicken wire covered pen 8m x 10m. There are positively 4 females and 4 males. I am pretty busy so I have only seen them mate a few times. I have 1 male who gets a little fussy but the other boys back down from him so there isn't fighting. I feed free choice a mixture of half starter and half layer. I feed clean broken egg shells for extra calcium. I hang a bucket that grows maggots that drop on the ground for them to eat. They have had mangos for the last 2 months that fall from the tree. I cut grass and banana leaves to give them greens I have thought about putting them in separate cages but I have heard they mate for life and I am not sure who is in love with who. I am in Mexico at the foothills of Sierra Madre mountain range. The temp ranges from 60 - 70 degrees in the winter and 80 - 90 in the summer. The cage is under a huge mango tree so it is relatively cool even on the hottest days. They get fresh water daily and I add apple cider vinegar on the first of the month for 5 days straight. I don't see any signs of sickness.
I bought them all as young adults in March of this year. First a mating pair from one person and then 3 more pairs from another person. After a week or so they started laying eggs... 2 - 3 a day. At least half the eggs were fertile and hatched with no problems. Then in May I started 4 eggs a day. Except for 1 week that is what they have been giving me. 1 week I dropped to 1 - 2 eggs a day. This was mid June. Since then has been the problem. Almost 1 month. Nothing has changed around them. They rarely get upset and alarm. As I write this I realize during this time has been huge mango production. Could that be the problem? Eating too many mangos?
I hatch and raise different birds to sell and guineas are one of the favorites here so I would really love to know what is wrong. Thanks so much for your time. I was so excited finding this website. I don't ask questions on forums because I feel most answers are not very educated. I rely on studies from different Universities for all my education on animals. This is my facebook page where I advertise my animals so you can see pictures and videos if you are interested: and this is my google business page:
Thanks again!

I have sent your information to a guinea fowl specialist in Tennessee but haven't heard back from him. Haven't forgotten about you - just trying to find an answer to your question. Has me stumped since you seem to be doing things right.

I believe the mangos could have been the problem. Mango production has stopped other than the odd one falling. I have candled the eggs due on Aug 16 and 11 out of 12 eggs are fertile. The eggs due on Aug 19 11 out of 11 eggs are fertile and the 9 eggs due on Aug 22 have all split the yolk so I believe they will all be fertile. I am curious to see what your colleague thinks. Thanks again for all you time and thought.

Sorry - my colleague never got back to me. Never knew mangos could adversely affect fertility. Thanks for passing on that finding.