keeping geese with chickens? and thoughts on pilgrims

bagendhens

Songster
10 Years
Mar 29, 2009
854
7
141
Outside the Boundries
weve got a limited amount of space to be building runs and such...
and we are in an area where at the very least we have fox and hawks...

were building the chicken coop and run very soon...
but the parents also want a pair of pilgrim geese.

the birds will all be allowed to free range during the afternoons (when theres someone home) throughout the yard and the run itself were planning on making 10' x 10' (and will only have 5 hens in there) with a hardware cloth roof.

now would it be 1: safe and 2: plausable to keep a pool and a little seperate house in the same pen for the geese, or would the geese and hens fight and cause problems? (planning on getting them all around the same time as chicks/goslings and raising them "together"

how big of a house do we need for a pair of pilgrims, they will have ot be locked in at night for saftey because we wont be able to put a floor on the run and theres risk of dig in...id want something big enough for the pair to be comfortable locked inside for the nights.

now i know geese will also eat pretty much everything, were planning on fencing off the veggie gardens that will be going in (hoping we can fence it low enough that the chickens can get in but the geese cant), but how bad are they on flowerbeds? we dont have much but what we do have id like to try and keep semi intact, i dont mind a few nibbles (nothing planted is on the list of plants to avoid) but i dont want big nekkid spots.
and generally pilgrim personality.

i also know its best to keep them in pairs, but what are some of the risks in behaviour to keeping a single goose (or gander)
they want a goose who will be generally sweet natured but alarm if theres something (or someone) in the garden
 

zephyrcreek

Songster
10 Years
Feb 18, 2009
584
3
131
Yale, Michigan
I do not have Pilgrims, but I do have 3 other geese.

I kept my geese with my chicken during the worst of the Winter. They were messy, but it did work. My space was large, and I do not think it would have worked in a smaller area as the geese splash the water everwhere. Wet chickens in winter are a big problem. I did move the geese out of the pen about 2 weeks ago. They were starting to exhibit signs of "breeding season". They are doing fine free ranging together. But ai think my gander would have been too agressive if they were locked in a small area.
 

ultasol

Songster
10 Years
Apr 30, 2009
1,987
15
163
SE Washington
Chickens will also tear up your gardens,.. sorry
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They will scratch and eat seedlings and make dust baths.
In a 10x10 area you will be hard pressed to fit a pool + 5 chickens + a pair of geese. Raising them together might not be the best idea either,.geese grow at an incredible rate and will soon tromp your chicks, and they also make a horrid mess with their water and damp chicks leads to illness.

I'm not trying to dash your dreams, I just want you to have the best outcome possible. Now, the geese and chickens could be introduced once they are old enough to leave the brooder. I would get the chicks first, then, later (few months perhaps) get the chicks. That way the geese haven't established territory prior to the chickens coming out of the brooder. Just an idea.

It's better to start with less, see how that works, then add on.
 

ultasol

Songster
10 Years
Apr 30, 2009
1,987
15
163
SE Washington
One last thing- yes geese will eat flowers/flower beds. They can't tell a flowering plant from a vegetable- all they know is what tastes good.
 

bagendhens

Songster
10 Years
Mar 29, 2009
854
7
141
Outside the Boundries
thanks guys!

i think were definatly going to hold off this year on the geese and start out with the hens...
i dont mind them scratching in the beds, i just dont want the plants completly stripping, and they have lots of bushes and leaves to realy dig through where theres lots of yummy stuff lol...

but i think ill tell them to wait on the geese untill we have everything in for the chickens and make some space to give the geese their own dedicated "safe zone"
 

amity3520

Songster
10 Years
Sep 5, 2009
120
1
109
New Hampshire
My geese were raised right along chickens the whole way and they do not like the chickens at all. If any wayward hens get within a few feet of the geese the geese put their heads right down and make sure that chicken is out of there. The chickens have learned, so we can let them free range together, but if yours don't get along a 10x10 are could be dangerous to the chicks.
 

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