Duck attacking goose

Discussion in 'Geese' started by Baybrio, Sep 5, 2010.

  1. Baybrio

    Baybrio Chillin' With My Peeps

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    OK, I read the thread about the geese attacking smaller poultry, well I seem to have the opposite problem. I have two seebies (I believe a male and female) that are probably about 4 months old. They have been living with 11 Dutch Hookbills since I got the geese about two months ago. The ducklings are just now getting their "nuptial" plumage and starting to show some interest in the opposite sex. The ducks and geese free ranged together every day, and have slept peacefully in their pen every night. They are never apart.

    We have been doing a lot of rearranging in preparation for (I just can't say the "w" word) cooler weather. So when the male goose was not with the group when I went out to shut them in tonight I thought he had just become a bit confused. I start to herd the others into the shed, the male goose comes up and WAM one of the male Dutch Hookbills clamps onto his back and will not let go. The poor goose is running around screaming with the duck clamped on to his back, hanging off to the side. This of course causes chaos with the others. I manage to get the whole group in the pen and corner the poor goose and pry the duck off. The duck had a huge mouthful of goose fluff.

    I hold the duck and try to figure out what may have triggered the attack. The duck is calm, the goose is hiding his head in the corner and the rest of the ducks and the other goose are agitated. I put the attack duck down and he goes right back at the poor goose. I had to physically pull him off again. So I sit with the whole group and keep the attack duck away from the goose until everybody looks quiet. I get up to leave, by the time I'm at the door to the shed the poor goose is screaming again. Since it was by now dark out I turned off the light which seem to put a stop to the screaming.

    What is going on? Is this typical? The Hookbills are not large ducks, the geese are much much larger. The geese usually win a stare down with the young turkeys, why doesn't he reach around and at least nip at the duck? Do you think they will work this out? Is the male duck doing this because my niece put a bright pink band on his leg a few weeks ago [​IMG] ? Is he doing this because I just spent many hours rearranging the poultry accommodations assuming the ducks and geese could stay together? [​IMG]

    Help!
     
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2010
  2. catnip

    catnip Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The duck is seeing the goose as a male competitor and trying to drive him off. They've always been in the same flock, so the duck doesn't see the size difference and the goose just thinks the ducks are flock mates, instead of "different" like he views the turkeys. The duck is showing dominance over the goose.

    For everyone's safety, get them separated. An aggressive duck can cause a lot of damage and then you will have a hurt, bleeding goose on your hands.
     
  3. Wifezilla

    Wifezilla Positively Ducky

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    Some drakes are just jerks. They will attack ANYTHING! I had one that would go after my toes every time my back was turned. He saw me as a competitor. Not all drakes are like that. You might want to sell him..or eat him.
     
  4. Kim65

    Kim65 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My drake Rouen Little Bill was always the shyest duck, until he got his man feathers and started mating his girls. About a week ago, I heard a ruckus and he was chasing Petey Peters the gander, had him in a shrieking retreat. Little Bill is one fourth the size of Petey. Little Bill chases all the geese, now, and there is much ruckus in the barnyard, as they all are together.

    I tell Petey to kick his duck butt but I think that geese will run screaming from a lima bean if it chased them.

    My guinea keets got to thinking my previous flock of geese were their parents, and tried to follow them. They had to run, of course, to keep up, which the geese interpreted as chasing them. So I'd hear a cacophany and look outside and see six guinea keets "chasing" a flock of ten full grown Toulouse around the yard.

    Under normal conditions, Petey is the boss of the poultry. He walks up and the ducks fade away. But if Little Bill runs at him, Petey will retreat in terror.
     
  5. Baybrio

    Baybrio Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:[​IMG]

    Thanks for all the great replies. Well at least my goose is not unusually timid.

    Does anyone know if they can ever go back together if I separate them now? We just special ordered 500 feet of 6' tall deer and orchard fence so that all the poultry would have some protection from predators and still be able to free range. Will I really have to keep the bad boys confined - forever?

    Maybe I can learn to neuter drakes and roosters (I keep threatening them with that). [​IMG]
     
  6. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

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    Seperate them until the gander is mature. Then he will be more than able to hold his own. Another option is to relocate the drake unless you need him for breeding purposes.
     
  7. Baybrio

    Baybrio Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Poplar Grove, IL
    Thanks for the advise everyone!

    Since no blood and not large areas of missing feathers were seen I decided to wait it out a day or two to see if these two could work it out. I was outside making more alterations to the shed on Labor Day, so I was able to watch them. No duck attacks during the day. The goose just seemed to stay a few yards away from most of the ducks.

    The duck attacked again when I was putting them in at night. I was ready this time and just plucked the attack duck off the goose, pulled a mouthful of Sebbie fluff out of his mouth and held him for a few minutes. Put him back with the rest - he attacked again - I plucked him off again (no Sebbie fluff his time). When I put him back he went to the food bowl and I turned out the light.

    Last night - I was ready again but no attack. At least one night of peace. [​IMG]

    I'm hoping they are working it out, but I have a backup plan if they cannot. The offending duck will be spending his time with the three naughty young Chantecler roosters. The roosters have a 5' x 10' inside area, plus a slightly larger outside run. I'll put the extra dog igloo out in the run in case the attack duck does not want to be inside.
     
  8. Kim65

    Kim65 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The social order of a flock is in constant change. Perhaps separating them from each other for a while will "reset" the relationship. I'd even consider keeping them from even seeing each other for a while (if possible, it would be almost impossible with my set up).

    Taking advantage of natural fluctuations in the flock pecking order, tweaking it a bit so they "forget" about each other might do the trick. But anyway, one day, the geese will be triple the size of the duck and at least the duck can't cause any damage.

    Right now, my female goose is being terribly harassed, I guess Little Bill And Petey have made a truce (see what I mean about fluctuating peck order?). Just in the last couple of days. ANyway, Lila is screaming and flapping and panicking all over the yard. Little Bill ran toward me to get to her and I snatched him up. I sat on the ground and allowed the geese to come and "inspect him" [​IMG] as my geese are very tame. Poor Little Bill had to endure a few minutes of having his feathers pulled and big goose bills coming at him. It did absolutely no good [​IMG] , Lila is out there screaming all morning. But I know he can't hurt her, you know? I have Bill and his girls in the pen for now to give Lila a break.
     

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