Her first nest

Discussion in 'Geese' started by wendigo, Dec 15, 2013.

  1. wendigo

    wendigo Out Of The Brooder

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    So one of my geese made her first nest. Not even sure if it's done yet but still some things concern me. It's december and heavy snow might be coming so it's going to be destroyed. It's very rainy outside and the area she chose is very wet. I have no idea how geese react when their nests are gone or if I should try to move it. Do I need to prepare a place myself? Should I help them somehow?

    This might seem like a dumb issue, but it's my first time with geese, so yeah.
     
  2. The goose girl

    The goose girl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My goose started nest building behaviour about a month before she started laying. She practiced everywhere and with everything - on the floor with pens, socks, and dust bunnies; on my bed with pillows; on the lawn with grass and hay; in her pond(!) with sticks and leaves. Whenever she wasn't busy doing regular goose stuff, she'd practice nest building. Also, she'd explore anything remotely cavelike making cute nest-building sounds - she really liked small spaces with a low ceiling and a good view. Like underneath a table or a chair.

    She finally settled for the goose house, where we'd put in a lot of straw. Now, whenever she needs to lay, she'll go there - and only there. She usually sleeps with me in my house, so she'll even wake me up in the middle of the night, honking incessantly until I put my clothes on and take her to the goose house.

    If you want her to choose a different location for her nest, I'll recommend destroying the nest she already has built. Put out a lot of straw or hay in the place you choose - and remember, she may lay anytime during day or night, so it has to be a place she has access to at all times. Preferably in a place where she already feels safe - and really is safe from predators.
     
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  3. wendigo

    wendigo Out Of The Brooder

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    May 8, 2013
    Haha, that's awesome but in my case there are 5 geese, out of which only one is confirmed gander. Do they share nests? It will be kinda hard to give them access to a nest at night because the space in which they sleep is a little brick room with a small yard only for food and water.
     
  4. The goose girl

    The goose girl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My goose's eggs (32 and counting) have all been spaced 40-42 hours apart, which means the laying time of the day changes all the time. She usually sits on the nest for an hour or two before laying, tidying the nest and moving around, turning her fake egg golf ball and sitting on it. Then she'll stay on the nest an hour or so after laying, letting the new egg harden and hiding it under the straw before she leaves. I don't know whether they're able to "hold it in", but I can't imagine it'll do them any good.

    As for sharing: I know two or even three geese will sometimes share a nest for laying, but usually it doesn't go well when they reach sitting time.
     
  5. mothergooz

    mothergooz Out Of The Brooder

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    Vernon Hills, IL
    As a wildlife monitor I can tell you that you may not be able to persude your goose from her nesting site. Once a mother has chosen her spot there is very little that can change her mind.

    From the mothers that I have monitored, I can tell you that these birds are very tough and can weather very harsh conditions. If the environment around the nest becomes too uncomfortable for her, she will abandon it on her own.

    In my experience, younger mothers will abandon their nests at the first threat or signs of discomfort. The older, more experienced moms REALLY tough it out, probably because their know their limits.

    It's a tough call. You want to respect her rights to nest where she feels comfortable and yet not endanger her life.

    If you can make the nest area safer from snow and cold, try to do so. If not, do what you have to to keep her safe.

    Congratulations to you and your mom on the upcoming blessed event!
     
  6. goose4

    goose4 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Up North MN
    Curly one of the white Chinese we got this spring also wants to nest. She made a nice little nest made out of have and she snuggles down into it and pulls hay over herself. She looks so sweet when she does that. She has laid 3 eggs so far. Since there is no way her egg would hatch or the babies surviving here this time of year. It has been below zero for the most of the last 2 weeks. I told her no eggies or babies until we have green grass again. She seems to have given up. She spends more time with the other geese now and I have not seen any new eggs.
     
  7. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Running over with Blessings Premium Member

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    You did the right thing in making her realize this is not the time of year to be thinking about raising children.
     
  8. livininbrazil

    livininbrazil Chillin' With My Peeps

    Yes, my three geese only successfully raised goslings when they sat separately. Their first effort (which I just let them get on with) was the 3 of them on a huge nest, not one egg hatched. They spent their time stealing eggs from each other! One female sat on this nest for weeks after I´d destroyed it a number of times. When her sisters had made separate new nests, laid, sat and then had goslings, she decided to leave the patch where the nest had been and became honorary gander to one of her sisters! The two sisters are doing very well looking after the gozzies together. Sometimes the father of the gozzies visits them, but he does tend to stay with his favourite goose and their gosling family. (They´re all free-range).
    As regards holding it in, I have a goose that is the undergoose of a different gander. His favourite goose was sitting on a nest, but I had a gosling or two that I wanted the other one to adopt. I put her in a pen with the babes for two days, but although she didn´t do anything against them, she didn´t want to adopt them either. So, I let her out. She made a bee-line to a nest-site I´d put up in the hedge (a tyre with a bit of grass in) and laid her first egg of 6, which she promptly sat on and hatched all 6! I´m sure she was holding that egg in that day! [​IMG]
     
  9. seminolewind

    seminolewind Flock Mistress Premium Member

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    Picture?
     
  10. livininbrazil

    livininbrazil Chillin' With My Peeps

    [​IMG] Here they are...The two families; the older ones are in the foreground, and the goose that was in a hurry to lay is the one standing with the white face, and the other one standing is one of the adopted ones. The little family in the back-ground is the now successful family of the 3 sisters and their broods. The saddleback standing on the right is the goose that didn´t hatch any of her own, but has taken the part of the gander with her sister that´s sat near her. The actual gander of these is the one in the back group on the left, standing with his white female, and the goslings ae all mixed up in a bunch together. They mostly move around as a group, sometimes there´s one big group, sometimes 2 groups and sometimes 3.
     

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