Killawarra Poultry & Hatchery- FAQ

The place to purchase bulbs or birds from Killawarra Poultry is at www.mybulbgarden.com.

Browse the store

My Bulb Garden Shop

Ordering from Killawarra Poultry?

You can ring me, email me or order through the web site. You may sign in to the site and enter all your details once logged in. This keeps it handy for later use.

We do not, will not ever give any information to any party, 1st, 2nd or 3rd, 4th, or 5th etc.

I value privacy very much.

FAQ - Guinea Fowl

On the incubation and care of guinea fowl eggs and keets.

After and during incubation I had lots of questions to ensure the process went smoothly with a good result. After trail and error one can find some of the information on the web accurate and some general. Below are points I have used and found to be true in incubation  and care of guinea fowl. (some point go to the husbandry of birds in general and can be applied as such)

——————————–

Where do I get Guinea Fowl eggs?

Killawarra Poultry does not supply eggs at this stage but….

If you don’t have any Guinea fowl the best bet is to go online, a poultry site and ask at the forum. Do a search online fro ‘Guinea fowl eggs’. This will help. I will be adding egg and birds suppliers to the trusted suppliers page as the hatchery evolves online.

How do I know if my Guinea hens are laying?

She will get sneaky. This is the best sign. If you have them in a run or pen remember to provide a hide for the guinea hens to feel secure laying eggs. Usually in spring, if the birds are free range, they will pair off and the guinea hen will look for a secure nesting site. Once found the hen or hens will fashion a nest into the hide. This can be a dugout, a few bits of grass arranged into a nest or stones and stick. She will use whatever is at hand to build. Of course, this does not include the fact that other hens may lay into the same nest and build it their way. Adding to a rather full overflowing nest full of eggs!

Are my eggs fertile?

Candling is the best method of showing if the eggs a fertile.

This can be done in a dark room with a bright light shone through the eggs to show veins an initial growth of the embryo. I love this time as you can get rid of any infertile eggs make the incubator safer from explosions.

I brought a egg torch online, specifically designed for the task. You can use many light sources as long as you stream it into the egg to illuminate the inside. Don’t use too strong a light as it may adversely effect the embryo.

How long do I incubate for?

Approximately 28 days for Guinea fowl.

 

Turn for 23-24 days

Stop turning for the last 3 days. At this time I spray my eggs with warm water and lock up the hatcher. Humidity goes through the roof but the keets love it! Come back on 24 hours and remove the keets to the brooder. THEY MUST BE DRY BEFORE GOING INTO THE BROODER.

How long do Guinea fowl live?

8 – 10 year as a rule

Of course some birds will live longer and some succumb to an early death unfortunately.

How many colours are available on Australia?

Thus far we have pearl or normal, lavender, silver, cinnamon, chocolate and the latest addition and release is ivory.

Ivory guinea fowl

Ivory guinea fowl by David Maric

All the above colours are available in pied (white breast feathers with the white creeping up onto the wings also). Pied can be from a little mottle to full blown white appearing on the front of the bird.

How do I tell cocks from hens in Guinea fowl?

The first indicator wihout gententic testing is the call. You can probably get around 80% with this method.

The next method is wait for spring and allow the birds to obtain adult plumage.

The wattle on the cock birds are much bigger and the hens have a two toned or note call.

Male charge each other once reaching adulthood and use this behaviour to assert pecking order during the years they ive together as a….

A CONFUSION of guinea fowl.

Alexandra Bylczynski

A RASP of guinea fowl.

Reginald Hughes

When the keets hatch what's next?

Get them into the brood asap. I always take my keets from the hatcher to the sink and encourage the to drink a little water to tied them ever until they get the gist in the brooder. After each keet is placed into the brooder tap your finger in the feed tray to show each new bird where the food source is. It also help with keeping a close contact with the birds. The closer you are to your guinea fowl through their upbringing the easier they will be to handle when they are adults.

Adult Guinea fowl - What do I feed them?

I use wheat 80%, finch mix10%, poultry grain mix10% in the grains.

Each day I make sure all the birds have access to greens of some description. The greens I use can be season, used in brooding, or out in free range. These include – chopped lettuce, cape week in its first two months of growth, chopped kale, chopped grasses (especially with seed heads), sprouted outs at 10 cm high, open grounds plants as they don’t eat what kills them because they seems to know which  plants to eat.

.

FAQ - Californian Quail

I am trying these beautiful quail this season for the first time. A very lively and intelligent bird that is a real treat to care for. A forgotten little avian friend that surely needs more of our attention.

How do I get my first pair?

Killawarra Poultry does not supply Californian Quail at this stage. Later on, considering a good year, I will have pairs for sale. But…..

Once again the web comes into play. Interestingly that when you ask about these delightful little birds in pets shop I get more information about suppliers. I will attempt to build a network of suppliers and place that information on my trusted suppliers page

Can I incubate Californian Quail eggs?

You sure can.

The Californian Quail’s breeding season is late spring to mid summer. With a clutch size of 6 to 15 eggs with a color of pale buff to cream. Incubation takes 24 to 25 days to incubate at 99.5° relative Humidity 60 to 65%, stop turinig eggs on the 22 day and raise humidity to 80 to 85%.

How do I tell the differnce in the sexes?

Males are brightly coloured with a noticeable bib/face mask. Dark brown nearly black outline with white.

Females are just as pretty but camouflaged for hiding on the nest. So the colours are not as bright and with no bib/mask.

How long do Californian Quail live?

There is two thoughts on this.

One is that the birds will live for 3-4 years in captivity if used only for breeding and not allowed to raise their own young.

The second is if the birds raise their young that the bird will live up to 6 years.

It should be noted that birds in Australia are considered bad mothers so eggs are incubated via an incubator and hatched and brooded until around 5 – 6 weeks of age. Point one comes into play here.

Do I colony or pair breed?

I have spoken to breeders who do both. Wether pair breeding results in more birds, if that’s what you’re after, can effect outcomes in numbers perhaps?

I  am giving it a go this season. I am also trying pair breeding too.

The results will be posted here……

Feeding adult birds - what foods?

I use wheat 80%, finch mix10%, poultry grain mix10% in the grains.

Each day I make sure all the birds have access to greens of some description. The greens I use can be season, used in brooding, or out in free range. These include – chopped lettuce, cape week in its first two months of growth, chopped kale, chopped grasses (especially with seed heads), sprouted outs at 10 cm high, open grounds plants as they don’t eat what kills them because they seems to know which  plants to eat.

FAQ - Bulbs & Seeds

As many folks in Oz know I have been growing and supplying rare or endangered Southern African Amaryllidaceous geophytes, or bulbs to the everyday gardener/plant enthusiast..

Genus that contain interesting and unusual foliage are the bulbs I like to grow. Many of the species have wonderfully elegant blooms with exquisite perfumes. Crinum, Boophone, Ammocharis, Brunsvigia, Clivia, Amaryllis, Nerine, and Haemanthus are amongst my favourite genus to cultivate.

Can I get bulbs from Killawarra Poultry?

Yes. Killawarra Poultry was formerly Mainly Amaryllids Garden. I supplied bulbs to plants people for 10 years to 22 countries  for a while back.

Now I’m  growing Guinea fowl and Californian quail as an added interest to the bulbs. Hopefully and added income too.

You can order online, email or ring me with your specific requests. I’ll see if I can help.

The bulbs are in 2 distinct seasons. Summer growing and winter growing. Ordering revolves around the seasons as does availability.

Where are the bulbs and seeds from?

For many years now I have been collecting seeds from South Africa , having them sent to me and then growing them on. I also have my own mature plants  producing seeds.

The resultant bulbs/seeds are those original seeds obtained over the years from collectors or seed companies in South Africa.

This process is still going on today and has been for 20+years.

Are these bulbs Invasive?

For the most part no. Like most plants they will try to get a foothold if left to go wild. Paper like seeds float on the wind, fleshy seeds float on water. Two popular dispersal methods from the bulbs I grow.

Any plant species given the exact environment to populate will do so. Tree, shrub, algae, it does not matter.

These bulbs are species so are reluctant to spread in a copious manner unless they are left alone form  many years.

In the ground or pots?

Many of the species will grow in pots. Of course they prefer open ground to allow for unimpeded root growth. Nice big healthy roots, big healthy plant!

Both can be successful. Pots do allow for root bound conditions so watch out for this. Provided plenty of root space.

Can they be posted in the mail?

Yes. I have posted and shipped overseas to 22 countries will little or no damage to the bulbs.

If you post bulbs or seeds remember to provide plenty of packing around the bulbs/seeds as they can settle during transport.

What is the best potting medium?

Bulbs are natures adaptation to poor or mineralised soils. Clivia, scadoxus and some Haemanthus species thrive in rich soil. Other Haemanthus specie swill rot in such condition.

A study of the bulb species you grow and soils they come form can be done easily these day with the web.

I can help with the basics and you will have to cater for your particular climate.