flock breeding pilgrims

Discussion in 'Geese' started by newgoosegal, Feb 20, 2013.

  1. newgoosegal

    newgoosegal Out Of The Brooder

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    Hi all! We brought home a flock of Pilgrims on Feb 14th. We've kept ducks for a number of years, but geese are new to us. We moved them in a horsetrailer in the evening, and it went pretty smoothly as we transferred them into their 32x20 hoophouse pen. I have no idea who is paired to whom though.

    I've read some of the very informative threads on this awesome forum abut setting up trios and such, but am wondering, since we don't know who is possibly related, can we leave them in a group this season and let them sort out their breeding dynamics? We plan to move them out to a 1 acre paddock as soon as the snow is gone (in a month?) The breeding season up here should be just about to start, although I'm sure the move to our farm jostled that up a bit- is there a chance they would not lay this year?

    They are 2-6 years old, and there are 19 geese and 9 ganders. I haven't seen ganders fighting in the group, just lots of "talking" so far. They are definitely used to being a big family. We're not looking to get into exhibition or anything, just continue the utilitarian side of awesome Pilgrim Geese as a grass-based meat source. I appreciate any insights and opinions you might have to share, and THANK YOU!!
     
  2. Going Bhonkers

    Going Bhonkers Chillin' With My Peeps

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  3. EmAbTo48

    EmAbTo48 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I would watch with a close eye on the ganders... In all honesty I would seperate but thats just me lol. I only say this because we picked up a rescue Embden from bad livng conditions that had been being overbred because they had way to many ganders she has no feathers on her head, nasty cuts all over her neck and head, and underweight. Some of the ganders had huge wounds on their bodies from fighting. It was not a fun site to see.

    It might be okay and it might not. Just be prepared to have to separate!

    And welcome to geese they are fun!!!!! [​IMG]
     
  4. newgoosegal

    newgoosegal Out Of The Brooder

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    Thank you so much! I've been wondering, since we moved them right before breeding season, how much "bothering" they will put up with. Our ducks do not respond well to any sorting during laying time, are geese the same? If I need to separate out, do I need to keep the hens calm (somehow) so they don't stop laying? Or will they lay regardless, assuming their nutritional needs are well met?

    I saw some attempted mating this morning, this blizzard seems to have put them in the mood!!
     
  5. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Running over with Blessings Premium Member

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    If you provide a quiet place with plenty of nesting material you'll see eggs. Just remember ganders will be very protective during breeding season so your going to want to be very careful when going inside their pen for feeding and cleaning and collecting eggs. carry a bucket or broom or long stick to keep them away from you and to teach them your head goose around there.
     
    1 person likes this.
  6. r4eboxer

    r4eboxer Crooked Creek Poultry

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    Congrats on your new flock!!! and [​IMG]

    I have pilgrims and I'll be pulling the extra males out of the breeding pens. They will fight and even try to kill one another. I came home from work one day last breeding season and one of my males was on top of the other pecking it in the head, it had made a hole and if I hadn't gotten home in time I'm afraid I'd have lost him. They were not penned and had 25 acres to roam.

    The first year I had my pilgrims I paired them up and then hatched out the eggs to make sure no one was related. It is a personal choice but I didn't want to offer goslings from related pairs. You may want to trio them out in separate pens and incubate one egg from each trio to see who may be related.
     
    1 person likes this.
  7. newgoosegal

    newgoosegal Out Of The Brooder

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    1st egg today! So far lots of hollering, but not big fights. We'll be prepared to separate out just in case though. One more question- if we have fighting, is better to take out the instigator gander or the one being picked on? Thank you for all the information, what a great forum!!!
     
  8. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Running over with Blessings Premium Member

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    I'd say remove the one being picked on but since i haven't had to deal with this can't say for sure but if you do have to separate someone always give a friend to go along for company. and congrats on the egg, we just had the best goose omelet.
     
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2013
  9. r4eboxer

    r4eboxer Crooked Creek Poultry

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    x2 [​IMG] Congrats on your egg
     
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2013

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