Introducing new ducks to geese

ZorotheDuck

In the Brooder
Dec 6, 2018
15
50
49
We have 3 American Buff Geese who are <1 year old (born in March). We think we have 1 female and 2 males (based on size). One gander is not super friendly (also not aggressive), the female is sweet but sometimes a bully to our female ducks, and the other gander (and the biggest goose) is a total sweetheart. We also have 3 mallards- one drake and 2 hens, all about 7 months old.

We are adopting a bonded flock of 2 geese (Toulouse crosses, believed to be either 1 female & 1 male or 2 females) who were also born in March and 12 ducks (Kahkis, Welsh Harlequins, and Cayuga) who are all > 1 year.

Our mallards at this point are essentially feral, living at our pond 24/7 (although they do swim over to say hello and eat out of our hand). Our geese roam free and prefer to night over in the pond with the ducks.

I’m not too concerned about introducing the new flock to our ducks. I am more concerned about our geese. We will have a separate & secure sleeping area for the new birds, but i’m wondering if any one has suggestions on timing introductions to the pond (it’s big so I want to be able to get every one out for bed time and also chaperone initial swim time), and introductions of new ducks to geese. I can find a lot of advice about goose-to-goose intros and duck-to-duck intros, but not about duck-to-goose intros (especially ones coming with their own set of goose friends).

Any advice appreciated!
 

Kkrista123

Crowing
Dec 2, 2018
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Hatboro PA
My Coop
My Coop
Hello! I don’t have specific expierence on introducing ducks to geese but I have some knowedge since no one else with experience chimed in yet! First thing is your desperation plan is a really good idea. If I were you I only introduce the new geese during the day or at times you can observe the situation. Then I’d continue to keep them separated at night until you feel your flock has accepted them. You know your flock best so only you will know when they are truest ready. I have read a few articles on this and the magic number for separation seemed to be 2 weeks for full adjustment. Of course some flicks are more welcoming and some are less. Pay close attention to everyone’s reactions so you can respond if needed to. Good luck!
 

ZorotheDuck

In the Brooder
Dec 6, 2018
15
50
49
Hello! I don’t have specific expierence on introducing ducks to geese but I have some knowedge since no one else with experience chimed in yet! First thing is your desperation plan is a really good idea. If I were you I only introduce the new geese during the day or at times you can observe the situation. Then I’d continue to keep them separated at night until you feel your flock has accepted them. You know your flock best so only you will know when they are truest ready. I have read a few articles on this and the magic number for separation seemed to be 2 weeks for full adjustment. Of course some flicks are more welcoming and some are less. Pay close attention to everyone’s reactions so you can respond if needed to. Good luck!
Thank you for your reply! We have a large fenced garden that I was planning to put the new flock in during the day until everyone gets used to each other. Our geese can visit everyone with a safe barrier and the new flock can get used to their new home. After a few days, I was thinking I could let our geese into the garden to for some chaperoned visits, for about 2 weeks per your suggestion.

I would love for our geese to fold into the new flock, but I’m not sure how the sleeping situation is going to play out. Our geese like sleeping in the pond with our mallards (despite having their own sleeping quarters in our barn). Our pond is relatively safe with cattails and overhanging cottonwoods for cover, and we built a floating shelter that is tethered to remain in the middle of the pond. However, the new flock can’t fly or move as fast as our mallards, and no one is as big as our American Buffs. I really want to establish the habit of them all coming in at night and do not want them to sleep over in the pond. My hope is that our geese will bond withthe new flock and go to bed with everyone in the barn at night instead of the pond (I would love for our mallards to do this too but don’t have a ton of hope this will happen).

So I guess my next question is: should I at any point (after two weeks or so) “force” our geese to go to bed in the barn with the new flock? Or let them decide for themselves?
 

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