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Helmeted guineafowl

Numida meleagris

Helmeted guineafowl

Helmeted guineafowl are large birds with no feathers on their heads. Instead, their heads have a yellow or red bony lump with red or blue patches of skin. Their bodies are covered with feathers which are grey and black and speckled with white.

They tend to live in flocks of up to hundreds of birds and forage on open ground.

These birds can fly but they are more likely to run away from danger when alarmed.


Diet - Herbivore/Insectivore
Helmeted guineafowl feed mainly on bulbs, tubers, berries, insects and snails.

Body length can be up to 58 centimetres (cm) and these birds can weigh up to 1.3 kilograms.

Helmeted guinea fowl are found on open habitats such as savannahs or farmland, in sub-Saharan Africa.

Conservation status
The IUCN does not consider the helmeted guineafowl to be threatened at present.

The helmeted guineafowl is hunted for its meat as it is considered a delicacy in some parts of the world, as are its eggs.

Current population
The population of the helmeted guineafowl is thought to be stable at the moment.

Zoo population
There are more than 3,200 helmeted guineafowl living in zoos throughout the world.