gosling hatched later than siblings & can't walk


Jun 1, 2017
Kenilworth Qld Australia
I need advice on the above. He hatched last night. He is a tufted roman/pilgram. We have called him Lucky. The others 7 had their first day out yesterday & hatched 4 days ago. when they left the nest this am he was left behind because he can't walk. He was very cold. I warmed him up skin to down then popped him on the grass near his gaggle which he joined by staggering, flipping & rolling. However when they move he gets left behind. I want to get him with his gaggle asap so he needs to be able to walk as they free range over 30 acres and 6 dams. Is there anything else I can do he has had water and is eating grass.
Hey! Welcome to BYC...you're at the right place for some great advice. There are several trusted members that are goose experts and all around poultry health gurus.

I'm having trouble picturing your set up. Do you have adult geese that are raising these goslings? Also, are they kept in a coop/run at all or strictly free range?
Thanks for the welcome
We have full free range. The geese 6 and ganders 4 and now our first hatch for 2019 of 8.
There are 3 other geese sitting at the moment with another 2 not far off their first lay. The set around the tanks in in old garden beds close to the house. We originally hand raised 3 goslings in 2017 and then they joined the adults we had purchased.
You will need to give him a good once over... see if the mobility issue is a deformity... or ???

With late hatches... left behind eggs... . I usually keep them in the house until the "left over" eggs hatch AND the new hatchlings are running well. Then I put the new ones in with the others and usually (as long as the new one matches in color to the old ones) everything goes well.

With chicks and ducklings a week spread or less is fine. But if the broody is in a more restricted area I can add new chicks up to 2 weeks apart. (I have had geese...but haven't brooded them, but I am sure the main points are the same as with ducks and chickens)

So... my points....

Get the later to hatch gosling, look him over closely and see if you can figure out the issue. A funky foot can easily be taped flat... splay legs are a bit harder, but can often be splinted and fixed when found early. Etc. Figure out what is wrong

You might have to raise him until he can move more easily. With geese, yes!, this can be a problem since he might bond to you and not want to follow mom...however, since he heard mom from the egg.... there is still a chance that it will work.

Another option is if you can pen up mom and the goslings, or at least give them feed and water then she might not walk as far and make it easier for the late one to keep up. So, make it so he dosen't have to walk as much to keep up while he gets stronger or heals.
thanks Alaskan,
I don't think I have a chance of penning the goose & goslings and they have food & water at the house. The trouble is they move every 30 mins or so to a different position around the house . I have checked him out and can't find anything wrong with his appearance. We will keep him with us till he can catch up with the others he definitely goes to mum & gossies when I put him down but can not keep up with them when they move so I don't think it will be a problem for him to follow mum later. I thought once she stopped sitting on the nest the other eggs would not hatch. Should we leave the other eggs in the nest once she leaves it all day ? she does go back at night.
I thought once she stopped sitting on the nest the other eggs would not hatch. Should we leave the other eggs in the nest once she leaves it all day ? she does go back at night.
You are correct, if she is no longer sitting the other eggs will not hatch.

I have an incubator in the house, so I put unhatched eggs in there when mom leaves.
Hi Alaskan
Well His mum, dad, & fellow goslings were all waiting at the back door for him to come out this am we kept him in overnight. He is good on his legs now but after a couple of meters running he stops for a little rest. Then both mum & dad started pecking him and running him off ?? so he ran over to me & sat between my feet. We have been co parenting all day whenever they run him off. If mum hears him chirping she honks back calling him then an hour later pecks at him have you seen this behaviour before ? I thought they would either accept him or reject him not half & half.
From all I have seen it’s survival of the fittest and if one is not doing well it will get left or run off. This protects the flock from predators who prey on the sick or injured. If you can get this little one on his legs good they may take him back. Are you using any type of B complex it’s the best stuff when waterfowl have leg issues. Let them all continue to see the little one but try and keep him from over doing until you have been treating for a few days if you haven’t been giving him any BComplex. They bounce back pretty quick if it’s a niacin deficiency.

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