Wells Poultry

Author Topic: Keeping a single goose with ducks and chickens  (Read 563 times)

AndrewMBaines

  • Joined Jul 2012
Keeping a single goose with ducks and chickens
« on: July 28, 2012, 05:57:54 PM »
I've kept chickens (varied breeds) and ducks (Indian Runners & Muscovies) for about 8 years. Tried Turkeys once too. All protected by 3 Alpacas.
I've now bought 3 geese. Originally intended for the freezer, but really enjoying having them around. They're not aggressive (yet?).

I'm thinking of keeping just one of the geese. I know they're social animals, would a single goose be happy with the company of just ducks and chickens, or does it really need other geese about?

Thanks
Andrew

goosepimple

  • Joined May 2010
  • nr Lauder, Scottish Borders
Re: Keeping a single goose with ducks and chickens
« Reply #1 on: July 28, 2012, 07:04:31 PM »
We keep lots of Muscovy ducks (lots) and have Steinbacher Geese (like Greylag but paler).  You don't say what sex or breed your geese are. I'm guessing its a trio, so with a male.  The males only get aggressive when their ladies are in season - Jan/Feb through to end of May - our gander wants to rip your head off.  After that he goes back to being his easy going self (with us humans).
 
They are always meanies with the ducks - Muscovies are quite big and are more goose like than duck like so they can take it, but I have heard on several occasions that during the breeding season geese can literally rip apart a small call duck.  Geese like to rule our pond and will bully our ducks and ducklings just for the sake of it, but they keep pretty quiet and in the background most of the year so that makes them tolerable.
 
I would either keep a breeding pair - geese can live to a very old age and will partner for life, or just keep the females, they won't be aggressive, particularly without the male.
 
Geese are easy to keep and economical, you don't have to give them much as they love grass.  I would try it out and see - if they get too aggressive in spring, eat them, they will of course but you could try putting up with it - keep well out of their way and see how they get along with your other ducks.  Remember geese are very tasty but there's not a huge amount of meat on a goose - I would try and breed from them and eat them when you have quite a few.
 
Remember not to mix your geese breeds as it can lead to serious fighting.
 
 
registered soay, castlemilk moorit  and north ronaldsay sheep, pygmy goats, steinbacher geese, muscovy ducks, various hens, lots of visiting mallards, a naughty border collie, a puss and a couple of guinea pigs

AndrewMBaines

  • Joined Jul 2012
Re: Keeping a single goose with ducks and chickens
« Reply #2 on: July 29, 2012, 06:46:04 AM »
Thanks - that's really helpful. We don't have enough grass to keep many geese, and I've been warned about inbreeding. I think we'll just eat the lot!
They hatched 1st May, am I right that I should finish them early October? How critical is the date with geese? I had fun plucking a Muscovy after I let it get too old.

goosepimple

  • Joined May 2010
  • nr Lauder, Scottish Borders
Re: Keeping a single goose with ducks and chickens
« Reply #3 on: July 29, 2012, 11:02:43 AM »
They won't start breeding until the new year - Februaryish, so I'd make a feast of Christmas dinner if I were you.  We bought a big goose for Christmas lunch one year when we lived in Edinburgh expecting it to cover 8 people - slim pickings, just as well we had a big ham for backkup!
registered soay, castlemilk moorit  and north ronaldsay sheep, pygmy goats, steinbacher geese, muscovy ducks, various hens, lots of visiting mallards, a naughty border collie, a puss and a couple of guinea pigs

 

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