Chickens vs Geese

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Backyard Barb, Jul 7, 2011.

  1. Backyard Barb

    Backyard Barb In the Brooder

    Jun 1, 2011
    I have 5 chickens and would like to add a goose.

    the chickens are for eggs but the goose would be food.

    Is there anything I need to know about keeping chickens and geese together? Will to goose just go roost in the hen house? Is that ok? Any health issues about keeping the two together? Right now the chickens have the whole yard so if I cannot keep them together, I would have to think hard.
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2011

  2. HorseFeatherz NV

    HorseFeatherz NV Eggink Chickens

    I have geese and chickens.

    My geese are bullies and need to be watched around the chickens. If they can corner a chicken, they will pluck it. Such brats.

    I feed a feed that is for a mixed flock - Flock Raiser by Purina - so it has all the good stuff that water fowl need also (niacin and lysine).

    Goose is so-o-o-o yummy [​IMG] It is worth the "trouble" of keeping an eye on them, just so we can have a couple on the table [​IMG]
  3. EricH

    EricH Chirping

    Jul 25, 2010
    Valley Springs, ca
    Im sure it'll be the same as having a large, disgruntled duck. It will do its thing and your chickens will do their thing. If you have a large run attached to your coop as i do, and you leave the gate open letting them roam your property every day, like i do, then the goose will more than likely at least come back to the run every evening, but maybe not be inside the coop. i've only raised ducks, not geese, but the ducks come back to the run about 8pm or so, for a while i'd chase em in the coop but now i just let them do their own thing. typically theyd rather be out by the kiddie pool all night long or out in the rain all night long and not indoors. In the rain im lucky to get em back into the coop at all, theyre usually out digging up worms.

    And a big point - Like all birds, especially chickens, turkeys, etc. Give them enough room to get out of the way of the more aggressive birds, or to run and hide somewhere. When theres nowhere to hide, or flee, most times a mild hazing can turn into a dead bird. I know from experience, and its not fun burying a bird that was pecked to death because it had nowhere to run. not a good feeling at all.
  4. Backyard Barb

    Backyard Barb In the Brooder

    Jun 1, 2011
    We dont have a run, once the ladies are out they have the run of the whole yard ~5,500 sqft. Ironically our house is 950 sqft so who has the better accommodations? Do we keep chickens or are they keeping us? Point being, I think they can cohabit during the day ok.

    Its mostly housing them at night Im worried about. We have to lock the ladies up at night because of the raccoons and although I imagine that a goose would be better able to defend its goosey self against a attack, Im not sure I want to test that. I dont know much about goose behavior never having raised them. I dont even know if geese expect to roost or want to roost with the chickens. I suppose if I had just one goose, and it grew up with chickens it might think it was a chicken an be really offended if I didnt let it roost with the chickens?[​IMG]

    Good to know about the mixed flock feed.
  5. bertman

    bertman Songster

    May 13, 2011
    Have never had chickens and geese together, but we had three White China geese for years. They never roosted anywhere but on the ground in a wire enclosure we set up for them. Year round.

    To my wife and me, the geese were like big pets who wanted to climb into your lap or come into the house with you. They were very demanding of affection and would bug us incessantly when we were in our yard swing or sitting in the yard. Also very definite about who they liked and who they disapproved of and they were never shy about intimidating anyone they didn't like--including my youngest stepdaughter who was scared to death of them. They are big and will beat you with their wings and can deliver a vicious bite.

    They are LOUD but that makes them good watch-geese if you like that idea.

    They also lay HUGE green gobs of goose poop all over the place. Not like chickens. We're talking HUGE, slippery gobs.

    One of our geese died of an infection from being snake bitten while defending her nest. Another was attacked and killed by either a coyote or some other large animal (maybe a dog) that climbed into their goose pen. The last one survived being attacked--probably by the same predator as his brother.

    My wife incubated the geese in an incubator and watched them hatch out. We handled them constantly when they were goslings, so that's why they were so attached and protective of us.

    I don't know if this helps, but good luck with yours.

  6. deanawo

    deanawo In the Brooder

    Sep 14, 2009
    I have seen my geese grab a duck and hold it under water more than once. They do it when I change the water in the pool and it is fresh and cold. They want it to themselves. As soon as the water gets a little muck in it they let the ducks join. Before that and they will hold them under then run them out of the pool. They will also pluck the feathers out of the tail of your chickens.
  7. Pele

    Pele Songster

    Feb 25, 2011
    Hrm, this is a difficult to answer question. I have heard that you cannot keep a male duck in with chickens due to um.......... equipment conflicts (I can't be more specific without being crude [​IMG]). These conflicts can result in injury of the chickens.

    I wouldn't be surprised if the same issue is present in mixing chickens and geese. It would be interesting to hear from people who keep both.

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