What does a laying goose need in nutrition?

Discussion in 'Geese' started by littledear, Jan 14, 2012.

  1. littledear

    littledear Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 13, 2012
    Cabot, Arkansas
    Hi all,
    I hatched out some geese last spring for my daughter and managed to keep them alive by dumb luck. Actually they might have been hatched by dumb luck too. Anyway I have three females and a gander now that are toulouse and african mixed. One of my females started laying last fall then quit. Now she is at it again. Do I feed her anything special? At this time she gets wheat, all kinds of lettuces and greens that the local grocery store throws out and layers grit for the shells. I make sure they all have fresh water daily and they have two wading pools to play in, a shelter for night that I make them go into if it is to be below freezing at night. I live in Arkansas and my grass has gradually gone dormant but will green up off and on with the mild weather.

    We enjoy the geeses' personalities a lot . Oh yes my male is active with this goose that is laying and he was last fall too. If I try to incubate the eggs will the females take the little ones under their wings and care for them after they hatch? My goose didn't get broody at all last fall and my daughter refuses to eat their eggs as she thinks of them as babies of her pets so I feel like I need to hatch them out for her. I live on about 4 acres of land that is fenced with sheep wire and they are in my yard that has a four foot chain link fence around it. Can I let them roam in the pasture in the day time? Thanks for any advice as I am really new at this.
  2. Oregon Blues

    Oregon Blues Overrun With Chickens

    Apr 14, 2011
    Central Oregon
    My best guess is that she needs a better source of protein and a source of calcium. Does the layer grit contain oyster shell? Even if it does, I would keep out a separate pan of oyster shell. A lot of calcium goes into building a goose egg shell. She will need more oyster shell than grit because she can pick up the grit she needs off of the soil and it is unlikely that she can pick up calcium (unless she has access to a shell driveway.).

    Oyster shell is very cheap and a 50 pound bag will last you a couple of years. It doesn't spoil.

    Geese are grazers and newly sprouted grasses can contain enough protein for them, but if she is not grazing, I don't see anything that you are feeding that contains any amount of protein.

    If you don't want to buy her layer pellets, you can at least add 4-5 pieces of dry cat kibble to her diet every day. That will give her a little protein boost. I buy the cheap stuff with lots of grain in it and lots of animal protein. Don't overdo it. Just a very few kibbles every day. It is a supplement, not a meal.
  3. littledear

    littledear Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 13, 2012
    Cabot, Arkansas
    Thank you so much for the information. The geese get mostly romain lettuce daily which has protein but I will buy some layers pellets because I expect the other geese to start laying sometime this spring.. I will also add oyster shells to their diet. I bought the grit when they were young knowing they needed something to help them break up their feed. After reading many of the posts I figure that I can let my daughter sell the baby geese at the Saturday farmers market if we get any. This has been a real learning experience for both of us so far so I figure it might as well continue on as a learning experience. I would have never thought that we would have gotten so much out of a few eggs and I have to admit that I love the geese as much as she does.

  4. poultry09

    poultry09 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 1, 2011
    Rainier, Oregon
    during the non-breeding season Purina's Gamebird Flight Conditioner. If you can get it or a similar feed in pellets, that would be the easiest transition for the birds. Coarse crumbles will also work. If the Flight Conditioner is not available, a good quality all purpose poultry grower or maintenance feed should be adequate until the breeding season when they should be switched to a waterfowl breeder or game bird breeder ration

    that is the exact e-mail i received from holderreds water fowl an preservation center

    good luck
  5. pete55

    pete55 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 19, 2011
    Suffolk, UK

    During the Winter our geese have access to grass and are fed a brand of waterfowl maintainance pellets. This sees them through the Winter in good condition. At the beginning of February they are changed to waterfowl breeders pellets which has added fishmeal. They are also given a soluble vitamin and mineral supplement which is high in Vitamin E for fertility. Probably not necessary but we are breeding from older Dewlap Toulouse ganders and had excellent fertility last year on this regime.

    Hope that helps youand best of luck in the breeding season [​IMG]

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