Goose eggs, timing of lock down

jake and pippa

5 Years
Dec 13, 2015
Hudson Valley NY
I’ve been hatching out quite a few geese for the last five years. I am posting an improvement which I made to my protocol last season. I feel that it significantly approved my hatch rate and significantly reduced my very late deaths and deaths post pip. I intend to use it again this season.

Goose eggs are a little tricky regarding incubation timing and day of transfer to lockdown. Part of the reason may be that these are very broody and they spend a lot of time on their nests while laying so even if you collect eggs every day there may be a very degree of development. They may be also differences between younger and older parents of course there can we differences between breeds.

In my experience, virtually any method in which you predetermine what day the eggs should be moved is a method which has a higher failure rate than what I will now describe. I hand turn my goose eggs and I candle them usually once a week but in the last week starting on day 25 or so I candle them every night. I look for shadowing. I remove every egg where I see shadowing, mark with a pencil and move to the hatcher. In this way I seem to get a very high rate of success, there are many fewer late deaths than I used to get when I would move all the eggs at one time. I think I even get fewer neonatal deaths. From my eggs in 2021 I feel that on average the best day to move them to lock down is on day 29 and they hatch on day 31. But daily examination worked very well.

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