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Should I buy an Embden or an African?

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 

I have raised three female ducks and I am going to buy one female gosling. I'm having trouble choosing between the Embden and the African goose.

 

I'm looking for answers to questions such as:

Which one would you suggest and why?
What are the pros and cons of each breed?

Any information on personality and size would be helpful.

Also, is there anything else I didn't ask about that I should know?

 

Any answers are appreciated.

post #2 of 5
Well, I haven't owned either breed so I can't really weigh in on that (although my aunt's female African is her personal favorite) but I will say you need at least two goslings. Just having the ducks won't be enough, they need at least one other goose to hang around with. That would be like buying one guinea to be with chickens. They may be similar, but they don't 'speak the same language' - geese have a language all their own and ducks are not enough of a flock for a goose.

I know this from personal experience - I have a roman tufted goose whose companion died in shipping. She had chickens and ducks for a flock here but she couldn't really 'talk' to them in a way they understood. She didn't really fit in and was lonely. Once I got two buff geese to keep her company, she was much happier and goes everywhere with them.
Edited by Pyxis - 10/5/15 at 1:53pm
Breeding Ayam Cemanis, Roman Tufted Geese, and Welsh Harlequin Ducks.

Vermonters, come join us in the Vermont thread!

Clearing Up Rooster Misinformation - Letting Broody Hens Hatch and Raise Chicks - Raising Dubia For Your Chickens
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Breeding Ayam Cemanis, Roman Tufted Geese, and Welsh Harlequin Ducks.

Vermonters, come join us in the Vermont thread!

Clearing Up Rooster Misinformation - Letting Broody Hens Hatch and Raise Chicks - Raising Dubia For Your Chickens
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post #3 of 5
I would suggest whatever one you like the looks of better. If you spend the time with them either one should be fairly docile. The Embden will be larger than a standard African. My female Embden is larger than my female white and buff Africans. They both graze good. Africans will uproot the grass but I haven't noticed it being too bad. You may want to get a pair of geese instead of having just one. If it more or less bonds with your ducks then it should be ok on its own. I think it's just better to have two. Even if you just want two females.
post #4 of 5


I agree with the previous comments that two would be much better.  If you were wanting only one because of space issues you might consider getting two of a smaller breed they both get to be very large.  Go with Africans if you like loud, talkative, proud, and ornery (which I actually enjoy in geese).  Go with Embdens if your looking for something sweeter, not as loud, and a little less personality (in my opinion).  

 

I would suggest reading up on the various breeds you can get some good information here but reading a book or two will also help you out a great deal.  They live a long time so you want to make sure you get the breed you want.  

post #5 of 5

Our geese put most of the fun into raising our first flock.  I would also suggest geese do better in pairs than individually.  We originally bought two goslings and during the first month, one of them we found dead with no indication of foul play or predators.  We took all the necessary steps to protect the ducks and one goose.  Within a week we noticed how the one gosling just wasn't acting the same so we went back to our local homesteading farm and poultry provider and picked up a second.  I think we lucked out and now have a Pilgrim goose and a gander.  Papa Goose, is the friendlier of the two and was the first of all the birds to take meal worms right from my hand.  He's a riot, while Momma Goose is still warming up and hasn't gotten to the point where she'll take anything directly from me.  She's bossy and he's loud and brave.  When I let the dogs out, he rushes to put both dogs on notice.  Amazing what kind of joy these animals bring to your life.  My days are pretty stress free, but on the rare occasion I have one, the moment I get home from work, I say hello and go out back and sit with my new family.  The stress magically slips away....

 

Best of luck on your choice and your new experience!!

 

Troy and Tina

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