The helmeted guineafowl is a gregarious species, forming flocks outside the breeding season typically of about 25 birds that also roost communally. Guineafowl is particularly well-suited to consuming massive quantities of ticks, which might otherwise spread Lyme disease. These birds are terrestrial and prone to run rather than fly when alarmed. Like most gallinaceous birds, they have a short-lived explosive flight and rely on gliding to cover extended distances. Helmeted guineafowl can walk 10 km and more in a day and are great runners. They make loud harsh calls when disturbed. Guineafowl is equipped with strong claws and scratch in loose soil for food much like domestic chickens, although they seldom uproot growing plants in so doing. They have no spurs. They may live for up to 12 years in the wild.