Would a Sebastopol gander defend my ducks?

Discussion in 'Geese' started by treldib, Jul 9, 2010.

  1. treldib

    treldib Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 5, 2010
    Southern California
    I have a flock of 4 adult female ducks (Black Swedish, Golden 300 Hybrid Layer, Khaki Campbell, and White Layer) and since Ive become so hooked on water fowl [​IMG] , I have been thinking of getting a pair (male and female) of Sebastopol Geese. My question is, would the gander defend the whole flock just like he would protect his brood of goslings? We have problems with hawks "teasing" them and I have read about how a gander will chase away hawks. And, Yes I am fully prepared and capable of taking care of them [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2010
  2. Hillside

    Hillside Out Of The Brooder

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    Ganders of any breed are not any real defense against anything. When a predator means business all the noise and posturing in the world isn't going to matter. It's a great idea to think that the chivalrous gander is protector of home and family but it ends up being a load of bull when the geese or whatever else they live with have been killed.
     
  3. goosedragon

    goosedragon Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 28, 2009
    Central NC
    Quote:That is your opinion? They are good at warning, fighting not so much. but you are welcome to come to my place and see what the ganders do with you. If you are determined you can kill them all but you probably are going to have some nice black and blue marks on your rear because you were busy with the gander in front but couldn't guard against the other two and then I will shoot you. SSS
     
  4. KellyHM

    KellyHM Overrun With Chickens

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    Lakeland, FL
    My Sebbie gander does his best to protect his mate, but he doesn't pay any attention whatsoever to my ducks, except to tell them to move over when he wants to get in the pool. [​IMG]
     
  5. Puddle Foot Farm

    Puddle Foot Farm Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My toulouse gander runs off foxes in our area. Out here, they're opportunity killers/scavengers and it seems our gander takes away their opportunity. Not saying a gander would do the same with you, but just another opinion. Your gander would probably protect the ducks if he was raised with them so they were "his flock". My gander, who wasn't raised with ducks, enjoys herding our ducks around our property and taking over their area. The ducks think he's boss. [​IMG]
     
  6. marathonmultiplesmom

    marathonmultiplesmom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 23, 2010
    Chehalis, WA
    I don't have any ducks but my chickens have been safer since getting the geese last year. Most of them hiss, call and fight one another but never fight with me. They try to scare me off. I have one female goose who is the only one who will fight to the death with anything/anyone. I have to use a net to handle her or move her and she has whomped me a few times. I always manage to avoid the bites. Other than that they are quite tame but do seem to ward off predators. I think just them being there makes a predator 'think twice' but as far as defending them, no, I don't think they will defend them. They may chase off a predator but they won't be thinking "get away from that duck!" It will be more like "get away from me!"
     
  7. laughaha

    laughaha Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I originally got my geese as protection/alarm systems for the chickens as I hate how chickens turn into zombies once the sun goes down. My geese were raised with the chickens and heaven help anything or anyone they perceive as a threat to THEIR chickens. They are sweethearts with me but absolutely HATE my DH (he is the butcher in the family). If they see him when they are in the chicken coop they try to kick the door down to get at him, all the while hissing and hooting and hollering. I love my geese and couldn't be happier with them. I know they won't stand much of a chance against raccoons or coyotes or foxes, but they will at least wake up and holler if something ain't right int he middle of the night. Oh, I have two Toulouse girls and am waiting for 9 to get here in the mail.

    I think the trick is to raise the goslings with the chickens.
     
  8. DaveK

    DaveK Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 19, 2010
    Quote:That is your opinion? They are good at warning, fighting not so much. but you are welcome to come to my place and see what the ganders do with you. If you are determined you can kill them all but you probably are going to have some nice black and blue marks on your rear because you were busy with the gander in front but couldn't guard against the other two and then I will shoot you. SSS

    My own ganders are my best friends during most of the year but are horrendous with me if I am fooling with nests or they know I am carrying goslings. They are vicious. None of that has me feeling that they could do anything to defend themselves against a predator.
     
  9. iamcuriositycat

    iamcuriositycat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 30, 2009
    Charlotte, NC
    My goose is a wonderful protector of his flock, always on guard. I agree with the sentiment that they can't be considered the sole line of defense--they will quickly fall before any determined medium- to large- predator. But they provide two important services that can serve as PART of an overall protection plan:

    * Early warning: My goose keeps a close eye on the flock and everything around, and when he sees something disturbing, he does not hesitate to call it out, very LOUDLY. When he makes a racket, I come running and what he can't protect the flock from, I can.

    * Deterrent: While a goose can't defend against a determined predator, most of the time most predators are looking for the easiest meal, and a flock protected by a goose may not make the best target. So while it's not 100% protection, it is fairly decent much of the time. There is much to be said for ATTITUDE.

    I still keep my flock locked up at night, and I did lose a goose to a domestic dog (grrrr), but for the purpose of deterring a pestering hawk, a goose will probably do the trick.

    My goose also is much more intelligent than the ducks and thinks on their behalf. One morning he brought one of my hens up from the lake so we could untangle her from some fishing line. He then got her settled in the pen and went back to the lake to bring the rest of the flock up.

    My only concern is that if the goose is not raised with the ducks, he may not identify them as worthy of protection. Mine were raised together, so he thinks they're his family. He does, however, accept new additions to the flock once they are full grown--as though he somehow knows all ducks are potential family, having been raised with them.

    Good luck. I love geese for their own sake and I do believe they are a valuable addition to a flock.
     
  10. banter

    banter Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 3, 2008
    Raymond Maine
    I agree with much of the info on geese being protective stated in previous posts. However, I find Sebastopols to be fairly non-aggressive, except in breeding season or with their goslings. I find that intuitive sense and size are a great advantage! Of course, I have the most intelligent Sebs on the planet, but to date they have sighted eagles, hawks,
    snakes and fox before the free ranging chickens and ducks did. They did not fuss, they moved themselves quickly quietly close to the house to cover, and the other poultry clued in and followed. I was in the yard with them each time and will vouch for them. I have learned when they stiffen and gaze and move slowly to cover, something is wrong! The other animals trust their judgment.
     

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