Thinkin' about getting some geese!

Discussion in 'Geese' started by phoenix_rising, Apr 25, 2009.

  1. phoenix_rising

    phoenix_rising Out Of The Brooder

    35
    0
    32
    Mar 12, 2009
    NE Washington
    So I'm not new to chickens....we've got a few for both meat and egg production (and humor!! hehe)
    But I've never had any other types of birds. DH and I were at the feed shop today and there were baby geese!! They were adorable and we started thinking it might be really nice to have one or two. However I don't know much about geese.
    So would it be ok to just have one? Will the goose get along with my chickens (particularly if they're all raised from chicks together) I know that geese have pack mentality so I wanted to make sure that they'd be ok without any large amount of other geese. We do have a pond on the property so they'll have water access.
    Do I need to create a seperate living space for the goose(s)? Or can they live with the chickens happily?
    The breed I'm looking at (the only breed available at the local stores) is Brown or white chinese geese. Mainly interested because of their "gaurd dog" nature. We are out in the country with only one close neighbor so I'm not too worried about noise.
    Thanks in advance!!
     
  2. TerriLaChicks

    TerriLaChicks Overrun With Chickens

    5,006
    321
    328
    Apr 23, 2008
    Central Louisiana
    So would it be ok to just have one?
    Honestly, no, geese are like chickens in that they like more of their own kind around.
    Will the goose get along with my chickens (particularly if they're all raised from chicks together) I know that geese have pack mentality so I wanted to make sure that they'd be ok without any large amount of other geese. We do have a pond on the property so they'll have water access.
    This, I'm not sure, but I never have had the geese in w/the chickens; I think they tend to bully them unless they are raised together from hatchlings.
    Do I need to create a seperate living space for the goose(s)? Or can they live with the chickens happily?
    I'd create a seperate space for the geese, to protect your chickens from them.
    The breed I'm looking at (the only breed available at the local stores) is Brown or white chinese geese. Mainly interested because of their "gaurd dog" nature. We are out in the country with only one close neighbor so I'm not too worried about noise.
    I raised white Chinas years ago & have Brown Chinas on order from Holderreads to ship next week -- for exactly the watchdog reasons, we also live out where their noise is not an issue--they are noisy & if you take the time to bond w/them they are wonderful, intelligent & loyal --but otherwise they can be your ultimate poultry nightmare. Do some research & see what best fits your needs.
    Thanks in advance!!
     
  3. Cottage Rose

    Cottage Rose Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,103
    40
    231
    Jun 24, 2008
    Mid west Michigan
    I agree do some research first.
    For a beginner goose owner I would recommend a more friendly breed like American Buffs, Sebastopols or Pilgrims.
    Some Chinese and Africans can be VERY loud and aggressive especially during the breeding season.
    In my experience geese do not particularly care for ducks or chickens and in a coop could bully them pretty bad.
    I would not keep them together.
    They are fine to free range with each other.
    They poop ALOT more than chickens and make big, wet, muddy messes with their water.
    I would never keep just one.
    They would be too lonely.
    On the positive side they are VERY intelligent and people loving if raised from hatchlings.
    You might want to read my websites "raising waterfowl tip page".
    Good luck! [​IMG]
     
  4. phoenix_rising

    phoenix_rising Out Of The Brooder

    35
    0
    32
    Mar 12, 2009
    NE Washington
    Ok, good to know. Thanks for the advice! I've got space to create a seperate goose habitat so that wouldn't be much of an issue. My husband is a stay at home guy so I know all our creatures get plenty of hands on attention and love.
    How many geese do you suggest as a min? If they free range with the chickens and frequently interact with people. Is two a good number or is that too few for them to be happy?
     
  5. raindrop

    raindrop Chillin' With My Peeps

    712
    4
    151
    Feb 10, 2008
    Western Oregon
    I have a pair of Pilgrim geese. They seem happy just the two of them. They are penned in electric net fencing at night (moved to fresh grass once weekly), I will be making them a larger "permanent" enclosure for the summer in my orchard because:
    1. They love me. They think I am Mommy. When I go inside, they wait for me on the porch. They poop A LOT. My porch is disgusting.
    2. They have scared my 3 year old son a few times (and he has scared them...) so life outdoors this summer will be more peaceful if each has their own space.
    3. They are eating my tulips and daffodils (well, chewing them off anyway, just for fun I think).
    4. They hate things with wheels, and chase cars down the driveway. We are getting my son a tricycle for his birthday, and these things do not go together well.

    They will get to free-range and visit the pond on a limited basis this summer. I plan to water a section of grass in the orchard so they have grazing all summer. When I am home on my days off, they can follow me around and visit the pond.

    I enjoy my geese because:
    1. They are very bonded to me, even though Mr. Goose is a bit hissy this spring around the pen/nest.
    2. They are very smart. They have intelligent eyes.
    3. Earlier this spring, they did a great job weeding/fertilizing in the garden, along with my slug patrol ducks.
    4. I enjoy having them hang out with me when I am working outside.

    Hope this helps you make a decision!

    p.s. I love my ducks too!
     
  6. Cottage Rose

    Cottage Rose Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,103
    40
    231
    Jun 24, 2008
    Mid west Michigan
    Two would be just fine but if one dies the other one would be alone but you could always get another one.
    I guess it all depends on how many you want to keep.
    Two would be a good place to start.
    If you don't want them to reproduce I would recommend 2 females because some males will still fight even if they don't have females around.
    Plus you could use the goose eggs for eating.
     
  7. Cottage Rose

    Cottage Rose Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,103
    40
    231
    Jun 24, 2008
    Mid west Michigan
    Raindrop...
    You can use 2 ft. high garden (rabbit guard) fencing to keep them where you want to. Its affordable, easy to intall and you can step over it but it tends to keep the geese where you want them.
    I don't like my geese up by my house and pooping all over the area we use for sitting, grandkids playing, entertaining etc. so this short fencing works great for keeping them out of areas we don't want them in.
    Mine how alot of grass and leave my flowers alone.
    In fact one of my new goose pens has left over Daffs and Tulips from a garden I use to have there and they don't touch them at all.
     
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2009
  8. raindrop

    raindrop Chillin' With My Peeps

    712
    4
    151
    Feb 10, 2008
    Western Oregon
    Quote:Thanks for this advice- I think mine need to get older and fatter or something because she is able to fly over my 36" field fence that surrounds the pond to keep little humans out. He doesn't try anymore, and so goes crazy when she flies out, then she goes crazy because he is upset...

    I penned them in their net fence a couple weeks ago during the day (not the normal pattern for them) while I had a friend and her little dog that was fond of harassing them over and she flew out of that as well. 48" high!!

    Do I have Super Geese or something??

    Oh, and we have 10 acres of Oregon grass for them to eat, but while they are resting in the front yard and in my flower beds and on the porch, I guess they need something to do with their beaks...
    I do love them though.
     
  9. Cottage Rose

    Cottage Rose Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,103
    40
    231
    Jun 24, 2008
    Mid west Michigan
    Opps...I have Sebastopol geese and they don't fly. [​IMG]
    Try clipping their wings.
    Geese are horrible, neurotic nibblers.
    YAH they do tend to nibble, nibble, nibble.
    Maybe its just my geese or Sebbies but as long as mine
    have grass they seem to leave almost everything else alone.
    Do you feed them any layer feed or grain at night?
     
  10. raindrop

    raindrop Chillin' With My Peeps

    712
    4
    151
    Feb 10, 2008
    Western Oregon
    Yes, they get layer feed at night, I mix 50:50 with Flock Raiser during breeding season along with free choice oyster shell. I haven't weighed what I feed, but there is usually a little left in the morning. The ducks always seem hungrier for the food than the geese do. Later in the season when the grass dries I feed more. The geese seem to prefer the grass, that I why I wanted to irrigate a bit of grass for them throughout the summer.
    I think my goose must be doing okay, she is up to 28 eggs so far this season.

    To the OP, sorry for the hijack of your thread, but I hope you are getting some insight into the keeping of geese!
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by