Are Geese good guard animals for chickens?

Discussion in 'Geese' started by mkhenderson17, Sep 8, 2010.

  1. mkhenderson17

    mkhenderson17 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hello everyone! I am thinking about getting geese to put in with my hens and roosters, they are all about 5-6mts. We have a guard Llama on the farm so Im not worried about coyoties or fox, but the raccoons can still sneak around him somtimes. I wanted to get a pair of geese to put in with my chickens for an alarm/guard critter. Does anyone else do this? if so how do they get along? do you have any tips on introducing them and such?

    Thanks!
    Mandy
     
  2. The goose girl

    The goose girl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I don't have chickens, but in other threads on this forum quite a few people have experienced their geese "playing" with their chickens - i.e., biting them, shaking them, tossing them around and dunking them in the water. Not good for the chickens... [​IMG]
     
  3. noahsgeese

    noahsgeese Border Collie

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    If you get the right kind of geese then they work GREAT!!!!!!!!!!!! We have two white Embdens and they are doing wonderful! When something comes, the male starts honking to alert you that there is something there and they can fight to!
     
  4. floridaquilter

    floridaquilter Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have three Toulouse geese. They get along great with my chickens and cats. they do not like to share their food and will pinch at the chickens when it is treat time. harmless nipping..chickens back off and wait their turn or rush in for a grab and run! [​IMG]
    the only down side I see to having geese is that they love treats so much that in the afternoons they try to get up to the front door on the porch. I block it off with chairs right now until I can figure out a better solution
     
  5. sydney13

    sydney13 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 11, 2010
    Massachusetts
    my goose loves my chickens and can be protective over them. my dog will follow the chickens around waiting for them to find food so he can steal it. when my goose sees my dog close to the chickens she will come running over and honk till he leaves. she also gets very angry if he sneaks into the chicken coop to eat chicken food. i think a goose is better at alerting you if something is wrong rather then defending the flock. you might try having a broody hen raise the geese. ths way the geese will always stick in with the flock and not go after the chickens
     
  6. CMV

    CMV Flock Mistress

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    Geese are not good guardians for chickens. First, geese are as susceptible to predation as any other bird and therefore cannot actually stop any predators. Secondly, geese (especially ganders) can be very aggressive towards smaller poultry and you may find yourself protecting your chickens from the geese rather than outside predators. Third, geese tend to muck up their water and make a sodden mess of their pens which is not an ideal situation for chickens who don't particularly care for getting wet.

    I could go on...

    I got geese for the same reasons you are looking into getting them. It was a disaster. I intended to house my waterfowl and chickens in separate houses, but allow them to share the same run space (over 1000 sg. ft.). That never came to pass because of aggression issues that I encountered. Geese are great fun, but they are tough birds to have. I had to cull out my ganders because they were so nasty. I still have a goose in with my ducks, but they are kept completely away from the chickens because the goose kept going after the chickens. She tolerates the ducks, but only after a prolonged introduction period. (She tried to kill them when I first put them in together.)

    I would not make any grand plans involving geese and ducks and chickens all living together in harmony because it may not come to pass. Try it on a small scale and see how it works, but I would also have a Plan B ready to implement should the need arise. I had to separate birds rapidly when the aggression began to stop my smaller birds from getting beaten to death. Although I fortunately have lots of space, I ran into a housing shortage. I did not anticipate having to build another secure house because the geese were bent on destroying any smaller bird that crossed their path.

    Geese are great. They add a wonderful dynamic to any setting, but they can be challenging. I am not trying to discourage you from getting them. I am just trying to warn you of the potential downsides of having them in with smaller flock mates.

    Good luck.
     
  7. shelleyd2008

    shelleyd2008 the bird is the word

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    My geese pick on the chickens when they get too close, otherwise they don't pay much attention to them. So I'd say no, they aren't good protectors of chickens.
     
  8. jennifer@couplandtx.org

    [email protected] Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Our geese are good guard animals, but they were raised w/ the chickens. They are still young, only about 6 mos. so I've heard that they can get meaner as they get older. They do nip at everybody and everything, except my DH and me... j
     
  9. kawonu

    kawonu Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We have several geese in the free range pasture with our laying hens. They will let everything know when something comes around. They get along just fine.
     
  10. Suzie

    Suzie Overrun With Chickens

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    I have to agree with CMV - the geese can get extremely aggressive in the Spring - they are also clumsy and mine have walked on my chickens, grabbed whatever food was around, would never share it and one of my chickens was repeatedy attacked by the geese for no apparent reason.

    Not healthy either for cohabitation - I have 12 geese, Toulouse and Embdens and you should see what a mess their stable is in after they have spent the night there - luckily I have a power washer and lots of animal disinfectant, I can't imagine my 40 chickens (nor my 25 ducks) causing THAT MUCH mess and the water is disgusting too where the geese have pooped in it.

    My geese are lucky as we have 20 acres of land here and a water mill - so they bathe their dirty bodies in there once they are released in the mornings from their home.

    Suzie
     

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