Our very first goose egg!!~~~~~but now what do I do?

Discussion in 'Geese' started by Rhetts, Mar 17, 2015.

  1. Rhetts

    Rhetts Songster

    Jan 20, 2015
    Northern Minnesota
    Our goose laid her very first egg today!! We are very excited but we have no clue as to what to do next.

    She made a nest in a barrel I had put out for protection from the winter weather. There was one egg in it this morning. DH and I think we would like for her to try and hatch them out if she is willing. But neither of us have ever had geese before. So I was hoping I could get some tips or advice from those Goose veterans we have here on BYC.

    Some background info: I have 6 geese that were hatched June 2014. They have always been together but only this spring have they 'divided' them selves into 3 groups. The main group is one male Toulouse, a female Toulouse and female tufted roman. The 2nd group is a male Toulouse and male African and they are the front line protection for the main group and they are always together. Then there is a single male African that has been kicked out of the entire flock. They are very aggressive towards it all the time. I currently have them all in my fenced veggie garden because they were causing some problems around the yard and with the ducks. They have been in there for about 2 weeks.

    I believe the Toulouse is the one who made the nest and laid the egg. I have never seen anyone mating her but that doesn't mean they haven't. I have seen them mate the roman. Yes, the 3 top males take turns mating the roman. Is that normal?

    Here come all my questions:

    1) My daughter took the egg out of the nest this morning to show us. I had her put it back. Will that cause a problem for goose?

    2) Should I remove the other geese from the garden and just leave the 2 females and 1 male in there?

    3) Is the egg going to freeze? I am northern Minnesota, temp is currently 36 and she has not gone back to the nest since the chores were done this morning(meaning we were in the garden and daughter touched the egg)

    4) Does touching the eggs cause them to not hatch well? Should I mark them and how do I do that?

    5) Since this is her very first egg should I take the first few or does that not really matter hatching out first eggs?

    6) What else do I need to know or should do?

    Sorry for such a long post. I appreciate any advice given to a first time gooser. Thanks.
  2. Garcia52312

    Garcia52312 In the Brooder

    Mar 17, 2015
    I don't think taking the egg out would be a problem for the goose, just don't do it anymore as the scent may drive her away from taking care of it.

    I don't see why you would need to remove the other geese unless they are bothering her, the nest or eggs.

    Eggs are hatch-able or so I've heard any temp above freezing point. She will not go back a lot as she is just laying right now, she will go back time to time to fix up the nest and should lay another egg the next morning or day after next until she has a full clutch.

    Touching the eggs does not affect how well they hatch as it doesn't affect the chick growing inside, however as I stated before the mother may want nothing to do with the eggs if they are touched a lot

    I wouldn't remove the eggs, I did that once with a Muscovy Duck and she just completely stopped laying eggs after I took the 3rd one.
  3. You could touch the egg as much as you wanted and it would not bother the goose as far as scent goes. You raised them and they know you, you are not a threat to them so it wont scare her away from using the nest or cause any problems with hatching.
    As for taking the eggs, you can leave one in there and take the next ones that are laid. This will keep her laying in the same spot. Like i said before the scent wont bother her but missing eggs will make her think that a predator took her eggs and she will think she needs to find a safer spot.
    For now she wont worry about the nest only before she lays an egg during the day, in the evenings at bedtime and when shes ready to set thats why she hasnt been back to it yet. Geese lay every other day as well.
    You shouldnt need to remove the other geeae unless two females end up using that nest, then that might cause problems if one goes broody. I wouldnt worry about that until if/when it happens. Geese will go broody when they think they have the right amount of eggs in the nest, the amount is different for each goose. Most of us on here only allow a goose to set on 7-8 eggs.
    Another suggestion... You have too many ganders for two geese. You might want to get more females for them or rehome them. The older they get the worse they will be during breeding season. The males will fight until they severely injure or kill one another and they can mate a female to death taking turns.
    1 person likes this.
  4. chellechick

    chellechick In the Brooder

    Mar 2, 2015
    North carolina
    Thank you for all this information when geese are through laying generally how long before the hatching process takes from first egg or all eggs
  5. When she starts setting its 30 days average but can range from 28-35 days. You start counting from the time she starts setting, thats all eggs.
    1 person likes this.
  6. Rhetts

    Rhetts Songster

    Jan 20, 2015
    Northern Minnesota
    Thanks for the info! I really appreciate it!!

    When/if she starts sitting and IF the eggs hatch what behaviors can I expect from the other geese? Will they help raise them or should I keep them away from her once she starts sitting?

    On a follow up from my first post: the 2 male geese had attacked the single male pretty badly and it ran into the barrel to hide where the nest and egg were. I decided for his safety to remove him from the garden. I also did take the first egg because the nighttime temps were forecasted to be below freezing for quite awhile for the night and she did not go in the barrel to sleep. I gave her some nesting materials yesterday in the front of the barrel and it looks like she may be using them today. None of the other geese go in the barrel. The main male hangs out by it from time to time though. So I am hopeful that they continue to use it and lay more eggs. Unfortunately it looks like our weather will be cooling off again so until she sits on the eggs there will be a potential for them to freeze while she is not in there. What to do about that? Point proven it is now snowing while I type. UGH!! What would you do? Leave the eggs and hope they don't freeze? Should I put 'fake' eggs in there? About how many eggs could she lay? If you suggest leaving 7 or 8 do I take out the others if she continues on laying? Or will she lay about that many? Will I know the difference between the toulouses eggs and the romans if the roman started to use the nest too?

    Sorry for so many questions. I really want to do the best I can.

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