Winter Geese Problems

Discussion in 'Geese' started by blueraven, Feb 6, 2014.

  1. blueraven

    blueraven Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Well I wanted to see and ask if any of you fellow geese keepers have any problems with your flock during the long winter months.
    I live in southeastern Wisconsin and this year has been one of the worst for cold weather we have not been above 30 degrees for months and almost every night is 0 degrees and during the day like today was a high of 6 degrees. My birds seem to be fine my ducks still swim in the pool i fill every morning for them to swim in if i don't fill it they will sit and wait in the empty pool so i just can't let them be sad. My geese love to swim in the pool also but my domestic breeds of geese seem to get alot more ice freezing onto their feathers. My female Toulouse has it the worst her feathers are freezing and dont even lay flat like scales anymore especially on her breast area and she also stripped the back feathers called the scapulars of the feather fibers so its only the feather shafts sticking out of her down. I bring her in the shed and when my parents are gone i bring her in the basement next to the wood stove and let her clean her feathers better. My two other geese are not in as bad of a shape as her but do you think there is a posiblility of her getting frostbite or sick from this never ending cold weather. she is laying eggs now and my gander is mating with her.

    [​IMG]my fav goose moose he loves perching on my head or shoulders and eats my hair kinda gets annoying in the cold.

    [​IMG]this photo of her was when it wasnt as bad only above her wings

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    This is her she is about to lay an egg
     
  2. RURU

    RURU Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I lost one of my beautiful Sebastopol's my lavender curly gander a few weeks ago from this cold. That was my last lavender. [​IMG]
     
  3. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Running over with Blessings Premium Member

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    This has been a very hard winter got our flocks, make sure your flock has plenty of dry bedding to snuggle down into and lots of fresh food and water also. Can you get greens for them? I look at the grocery store for produce marked down like collards, kale, and Romaine lettuce that way they still get some greens over winter. I also hang cabbage heads out for them and they love that getting to pull off the strips to eat. As far as your goose's feathers maybe up her protein some, feathers are protein and giving some extra protein may help some use game bird feed, The feed I use Purina Flock Raiser has 20% protein in it but I think game bird has even more. and bringing your goose inside next to the wood stove is awfully sweet but could actually make it harder on her to stay acclimated to the out door temps. It's worth it to take time to observe and make sure no one is suffering during these long frigid days and nights. sounds like you are doing just that and hopefully it will pay off in all your flock making it through this horrid winter to flourish when spring gets here. Since you have a goose laying make sure she has plenty of oyster shell to keep her eggs good and hard, and game bird feed will help her during laying season, your not going to let her brood during this time are you? your geese are beautiful [​IMG]
     
  4. blueraven

    blueraven Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oh I am so sorry to hear about your loss. sebastopolds are so beautiful and expecially a lavender. I imagine you dont let your sebastopolds swim at all in the winter.

    I put a heat lamp in their shack and i turn it on when their are really cold nights like below 0
     
  5. blueraven

    blueraven Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Dec 17, 2012
    Thank you for the helpful tips. last year I only had the canada and my ducks and never had any bad winter problems but we never got below 0 either so yeah. I noticed now that you mention it that my female geese have been picking up molted feathers and eating them my emdben i seen her once grab at one of my ducks to get a feather i was like ahh stop they need feathers to.
    I took the eggs as they will freeze if she doesn't stay on them lost an egg yesterday after i didn't see any eggs the first day but when i was cleaning the bedding found a goose egg in the straw and shavings it froze and cracked. when and how should i help her go broody i know now is not a good time i am thinking of letting her brood in march if the weather gets nice.
    I will definitely get some green food for them i actually stole some of my sisters bag of lettuce and gave them some yesterday and they ate it right up.
     
  6. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Running over with Blessings Premium Member

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    LOL I hope your sister didn't notice. she'll keep on laying most likely an egg every other day till she feels she has enough to brood then she'll go broody on her own. no need to try to get her too. Just keep taking her eggs and then sometime in mid march if weather begins to moderate let her keep them once she starts to sit count down 28-30 days so you can pretty much tell what time they will hatch and what the weather may be like, most like to start having gosling in April- May because it's warmer and gives them a much better chance of surviving. Usually when I see mine picking feathers up and eating them I increase their protein. Last year it was May before I let my Goose brood but it depends on what part of the country your in as when is the best time. Good luck and let us know how it goes.
     
  7. Buxton Ducks

    Buxton Ducks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    All my geese have been fine this year, and it has been really cold. -10 last night and somebody layed their first egg! However, it froze and burst open. My sebbies are fine and no frostbite on the chinese head knobs.
     
  8. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Running over with Blessings Premium Member

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    That's great to hear Buxton, It seems some of our members have lost some of their birds or have gotten frost bite, Do you keep your flock up when the weather is -10?
     
  9. livininbrazil

    livininbrazil Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oh, Ruru, so sorry to hear that. I was only thinking of you Wednesday when I saw a white sebastopol. What happened to him?
     
  10. RURU

    RURU Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thank you everyone. We are not sure just what happened one day he was fine and the next day down and foaming from the mouth and he died that day. There was not time to do anything for him.
    Here is my Nikki... He was a very lovely fellow.
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    This weather we have been having took it's toll on my Nikki. It has been the coldest that we have had for a whole lots of years!!! I just pray I do not lose anymore to it....
     
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2014

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