new to geese - questions

Discussion in 'Geese' started by AdrieeC, Jun 20, 2010.

  1. AdrieeC

    AdrieeC Pink Roses Farm

    194
    0
    109
    Mar 14, 2010
    Pearl River
    I currently have 6 chickens in a chicken tractor. We have been considering ordering turkeys from McMurray... We don't want 15 turkeys (The minimum order), so we think it would be best to get the barnyard combo, which includes 2 goslings, 7 ducks and 7 turkeys.

    How much space do they need in their housing? Can they be housed with the ducks/chickens/turkeys? Would they be nice to the chickens etc if they were all free ranging? How long do they have to be locked up before they can free range? And, has anyone had success with a tractor sort of house for their geese?

    Thanks for your help
     
  2. Kim65

    Kim65 Chillin' With My Peeps

    625
    4
    131
    May 29, 2009
    Washington state
    Hi [​IMG] I always want to encourage someone to get geese [​IMG] but this combo you are considering has lots of issues you should know about first.

    First, a tractor set up would work but it would have to be pretty big. Two geese, seven ducks and seven turkeys means a LOT of poop. My full grown tom turkey could poop an orange sized turd (well, tangerine). Geese and ducks poop about every ten or fifteen minutes. If they are mostly free ranging, this will be OK, as goose/duck poop is loose and you can hose it into the grass once a day. It is still raining everyday [​IMG] here in western WA so the poop is dissolving overnight.

    If they spend most of their day outside the tractor, you'll still have a lot of crap to deal with.

    Ducks and geese MUST be brooded entirely separately from those turkeys, too. Turkey poults are very fragile, need heat longer, and will not tolerate the mess and moisture the geese/ducklings will make of their brooder. Turkey poults must never get wet or chilled. It's hard enough to keep turkey poults from dying in that first week or two as it is.

    Goslings/ducklings will play in their waterer, and their food, mixing the two unless you separate them by a few feet, and make a terrible mess every two hours or so. SOme folks feed them a certain amount several times a day rather than free feeding, which cuts down on the mess.

    Goslings/ducklings in summer months will only need extra heat for a week or two. Yet they too must be protected from getting soaking wet and chilled for at least two weeks. Without a mama, they lack her oils in their down and soak water like sponges.

    Goslings grow like Baby Hueys, and will outstrip the ducklings and turkey poults. They are bossy and pushy. The ducklings (depending on type) may get stepped on, unless there is plenty of room in the brooder. They will get along fine with the ducklings as their "flockmates" though, and will stay close even as adults.

    So you have some thinkin' to do.

    If your new poultry and your present chickens are able to see one another every day, say through chicken wire, they will be familiar and able to free range together with little problems. Well, there will always be SOMETHING, because these creatures do not naturally co-exist, but familiarity from hatch will help. The chickens will pick on the little ones until the waterfowl get bigger and realize it. Sometimes turkeys fall in love with chickens and can hurt or kill them trying to mate. I have a chicken in my bedroom for the last six weeks with no skin on her back (healing very well) from the tom turkey. He became so aggressive I had to rehome him to another persons, er, freezer [​IMG]

    Hope I didn't ramble to much and gave you useful advice and stuff to think about [​IMG]
     
  3. AdrieeC

    AdrieeC Pink Roses Farm

    194
    0
    109
    Mar 14, 2010
    Pearl River
    Currently I let my chickens free range outside the tractor after 3 PM because they have a habit of not laying until after noon, and I had some issues with them laying in the yard.

    I was considering building a tractor for the geese and ducks...assuming they could be housed together, and yet another tractor for the turkeys.

    If not that, we have really wanted to build an open air coop. I was thinking that I could build a 25x10 and divide it up with separate entrances for chickens, turkeys, with ducks and geese together.

    It's summer here now, with 95+ every day. Wouldn't they need the brooder only at night?

    If the tractors would work well perhaps we could alternate who gets to go out on what day to avoid injuries.

    As adults will the geese and ducks want the pool in their pen or will they just enjoy it outside?
     
  4. laura13617

    laura13617 Out Of The Brooder

    33
    0
    32
    Apr 14, 2010
    SWest Iowa
    [​IMG]i totally agree w/ kim. i dont have turkeys but i do have ducks, geese, and chickens they coop together at night and free range during the day. oh boy do they poop:lol: and the duckies and geese are very messy w/the water! the geese do pick on everything even my adult full grown chickens but i love them dearly and wouldnt dream of getting rid of them:) i wish u luck w/ur babies. it takes alot of patience to raise baby ducklings..messy little buggers!!!lol worth it thouh i love my magpie duckies
     
  5. sydney13

    sydney13 Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,364
    10
    161
    Mar 11, 2010
    Massachusetts
    well i house my gosling and my chickens together and they all get along nicely although i have no idea how they would be with turkeys and other birds
    my gosling is being raised with 6 chicks and they see her as a mother and follow her every were [​IMG] she also lives with a full grown silkie hen and at first she saw the hen as a big pile of yummy feathers to eat but after saying no to her when she plucked the feathers out a few times she now knows not to do that. i cant even bring my self to imagine how much poop you are going to have to deal with from the geese and ducks [​IMG]
    i only have one goose and even then i can hardly keep up with all here poop because every few minutes splat out comes a big pile of poop [​IMG] and the poop is alot bigger then a cicken poop
    i let my goose free range after a few weeks and it works well because i dont need to worry about the chicks wandering under the fence and into the street because they stay close to the goose and she can not fit through the fence.
    another thing to worry about is that the geese grow like crazy and in one day my goose could grow as much as my chicks grow in a week so provide enough space so no chicks get steped on
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by