The supposed period for Geese laying their eggs is in the spring around the period of August to September but our Chinese Geese breeds lay all year long. Fertility will be up to 15% higher and hatchability up to 20% higher when you use mature female geese than with a matured 1-year-old male Gander.
Geese usually lay in the morning so don’t be a lazy goof collect eggs late in the morning to reduce the chance of egg breakages. Since most eggs are laid early in the morning it will be a good idea to not give your Geese access to swimming pool facilities until late in the morning, otherwise eggs may be mia lost in the pond/pool. Geese usually lay a clutch of 12–15 eggs and then go into a bad mood broody. When this happens look for somewhere you can keep her apart from the gang like in a pen.
To reduce the incidence of egg breakages, provide nest boxes and encourage their use for laying. Line them with suitable nesting material, such as wood shavings, dried grass, and allow one 50 cm × 50 cm nest box for every three geese in the flock. It is best to have nest boxes in the shed and throughout the yard if you have a large yard.
In our experience natural incubation produces the best percentage of Goslings hatched. But using Geese to hatch out their own goslings is expensive and wasteful as Geese are not laying more eggs while they are sitting on their own eggs. Turkeys and Muscovy ducks may be used satisfactorily to hatch out goslings with the best results obtained from Muscovy ducks (which are really geese). Goose eggs can be hatched artificially, but results are better if Muscovies are used.
Eggs should be collected at least twice (preferably four times) daily, and, as geese lay most of their eggs in the morning, the bulk of the eggs will be collected in the morning.You should store eggs for incubation in a cool room at 15°C. Turn eggs daily. The longer the eggs are kept over 7 days, the poorer the hatching results. Select only uncracked eggs weighing at least 140 g and no more than 200 g. Clean those eggs that are dirty by lightly rubbing with steel wool that you can swipe from the kitchen (don’t let the wife know) and wiping with a clean damp cloth again don’t let the wife know. Eggs will need to be handled and stored in this manner regardless of the method of incubation. Eggs can be disinfected by fumigating them immediately after collection. The actual period of incubation of goose eggs varies slightly with the breed. Some eggs from the lighter breeds may start pipping after 28 days, while eggs from the larger breeds may take 35 days. It may take up to 3 days for hatching to be completed.
Huge Difference in The Size, Goose & Chicken
Depending on the size of the bird, 4–6 eggs may be placed under a broody hen whilst a Muscovy duck may sit on 6–8 eggs. Since the eggs are too large for most hens to turn by themselves, you have to turn the eggs by hand daily when the hens leave the nest to eat and drink. After 15 days, eggs should be sprinkled with lukewarm water each time they are turned. Candling, that is, passing eggs under a bright electric light to view the contents, can be carried out on the 10th day and all infertile eggs removed. Where a Goose is to be used for hatching out the eggs, 10–15 eggs may be placed under her (the number of eggs depends on the size of the eggs and the size of the goose). If Geese have access to swimming facilities, the eggs need not be sprinkled with water.
Unless machines are properly managed, goose eggs do not hatch very well in artificial incubators. Hatches often are no better than 40% of the eggs set, even though fertility is about 90%. This is because of lazy fellows calling themselfs farmers poor management and because most incubators cheap skate homemade like mine available are not manufactured specifically for Geese.
With forced-draught machines, maintain a constant temperature of 37.5°C throughout the incubation period. The desired humidity will be obtained if the wet bulb thermometer is kept at a reading of 32.2°C to the 29th day. Then increase it to 34°C for the rest of the incubation time, using moisture trays and adjusting the ventilation. Incubators with a slow air movement over the eggs will hatch goose eggs better than those with a fast air movement. Slow air movement ensures complete distribution of air over all parts of the egg to maintain uniform and equal evaporation.
A Fully Automated Incubator/Hatcher On My Wishlist
Best results are obtained if eggs are turned over completely at least four times daily, that is, through an angle of 180° (as shown in the diagram at right) and not 90° as with chicken eggs. Best hatching results are obtained if eggs are set horizontally. Eggs must be spaced evenly throughout the incubator if the machine is not full. The temperature of the machine should be 0.2°C higher when the machine is less than 60% full. Because goose eggs require high humidity, they should be sprinkled daily with warm water. After the 15th day of incubation, eggs should be completely submerged every second day in water kept at a temperature of 37.5°C and then daily in the last week of incubation, for 1 minute. Alternatively, fine nozzles that spray water at 37.5°C when needed can be installed in the incubator.
Eggs should be transferred to the hatcher on the 27th day of incubation unless experience shows eggs are hatching at less than 30 days of age. Eggs should be dipped or sprinkled with water, as previously described, only once after they are transferred. Temperature in the hatching compartment should be kept at 37°C and relative humidity at about 80%. After the peak of the hatch, reduce to 36.5°C and 70% humidity. Leave goslings in the hatcher for 2–4 hours after the hatch is completed, then transfer them to the brooders.
The sex of day-old goslings can be identified in a similar manner to that used for chickens, by examining the vent. Day-old goslings can be identified by holding the legs firmly between the first and second fingers of the left hand, with the neck between the third and fourth fingers and the breast away from you. Then press gently with the left thumb on the abdomen while at the same time pressing down on the tail with the thumb and forefinger of the right hand. Do this quickly to remove the contents of the bowel, making examination easier. The vent is then everted by pressing gently down on the abdomen with the thumb of the left hand near the vent. Simultaneously place the first finger and thumb of the right hand close together on the opposite side of the vent and slowly separate with a gentle but firm pressing motion, stretching and everting the cloaca to expose the penis if the gosling is male.
Sexual Organ Of Matured Gander
Sexual Organ Of Mature Goose
Mature Geese (over the age of 7 months) can be identified by physical examination. The identification is made easier if two people are available. One method of exposing the penis is by pushing back the tail towards the head with one hand and exerting a steady downward pressure on the abdomen with the other. The vent will then be everted and the organ exposed. The penis, spiral shaped and white, is just over 1 cm long in immature birds but up to 4 cm long in mature ganders. The colour of the area inside the gander’s vent is pink and the surface is smooth. The illustrations of the exposed reproductive organs of an immature male, a mature male and a maturing female will assist in sex identification:
It is difficult to distinguish the sex of growing goslings and mature birds other than by examining for the presence of the male’s penis. These characteristics may also help you to distinguish sexes. The Gander has a high shrill voice, Slightly larger body, Slightly longer neck, Larger head, a Knob at base of top beak in Chinese geese and moves to outside when flock is approached. The Goose has a harsh, hoarse cry, Soft abdomen and wide pelvic bones in those layers.
Geese in East Malaysia are kept mainly as watchdogs, weed controllers, deterrents to snakes, as pets but rarely for their expensive meat. If they are kept for their meat then the breeding stock should be selected for their expected genetic ability to produce quick-growing, early-maturing goslings with compact meaty bodies. You don’t want to waste your time should only keep breeders that will be profitable are not too fat, select only healthy examples.
Keeping records will be very valuable when selecting for egg production either for the purpose of natural brooding or artificial means. From your records you will be able to select which should be slaughtered culled or sold off. From our records we have recorded an annual production of between 45 to 55 eggs from our Chinese Geese. Please make sure that your selected breeders are at least 1 year old before letting them do the wild thing mating. Geese can be kept for breeding until they are around 10 years of age, but male geese Ganders reach the limit of their fertility at around 6-8 years of age. The length of time breeders are kept depends on their libido performance. It may be necessary to replace birds after only four breeding seasons. With our Chinese Geese we use one male goose Gander to about five Geese.
Provide your Geese with swimming pool pond as they like prefer mating under in water. The swimming pool water is usually only necessary in the breeding season. It not improves the chances of a successful mating but helps in conditioning the geese and help keep them clean, which in turn helps to keep eggs clean.
Geese are choosy selective in choosing their mates and once successful matings have been established, will remain together for life. If the birds are allowed to select their mates, it is best to put more than the required number in a pen until the selections have been made. In the event of having to change mates, run the separated birds as far from each other as possible to prevent the birds fretting. Sometimes a male goose Gander will be a choosy fella not mate with one or two of the females, which mean fertility and the hatchability rate will be lowered.
If the male goose Gander shows equal love attention to all his mates then he is probably mating with them all. To test if the matings are successful, remove females from the gander one at a time to test his reaction. If he does not throw a hissing fit is contented and not concerned, then chances are he is not mating with that particular goose. If, however, the Gander appears that he wants to hiss you to death agitated then he is most probably mating with her.
Where it is desired to ‘force mate’ Geese, remove the male goose Gander from his ladies and add the new females to the ones he is already mating with, to enable all females to first accept each other. After a few days, reintroduce the male goose Gander to his ladies.
If flock matings are practiced, male geese Ganders will want to show who is boss may fight, but no serious damage will occur if they are evenly matched. Any continually subjected to bullying should be removed from the flock so too should Geese that wander around on their own as their eggs will be infertile. There will be less fighting if ganders selected for breeding have been reared together from young.
Because goose breeds will successfully do the wild thing mate with usually no more than three females plus being only seasonal breeders, you must consider the cost of maintaining a flock as it will be can be expensive when breeders eat you out of any profit consume a large amount of feed.
Overseas, AI techniques are now being used successfully. While AI naturally requires more additional work, it does do also mean that fewer male geese Ganders are needed in a flock, and semen and fertility can be easily evaluated. We know nuts have yet to experiment with any AI techniques hence are unable to provide any further information.
There are a number of breeds you can consider. Here in Sarawak we only have access to Chinese Geese. There are two colour varieties of this breed, the White Chinese and the Brown Chinese. Both originated in China and are smaller than the Toulouse or Emden (sometimes spelt as Embden). The Chinese is distinguishable from other geese by the knob or protuberance on its head.
Our breeding sheds are very cheapskate simple. A skillion roof provides shelter and we use large flower pots placed on the side for nesting boxes but it is essential that the yard be completely enclosed. For us it also avoids the Geese wandering about placing their shit ‘deposits’ everywhere on the concreted areas and also provides easier management when needing to catch them for examination.
A layer of wood shavings or padi husks on the floor will help maintain dry conditions. Geese tend to shit a lot foul their sleeping quarters, so damp and wet litter must be removed frequently, more so in tropical weather like ours. Yard size is determined by the amount of space available and the method of management and feeding. As a guide, a yard should allow each goose 2 m2 of ground space. The size of the yards will be governed to a large extent by the number of geese to each shed. Each breeding flock need not be confined to a separate shed and yard. Provide each shed with nest boxes, even though some geese will make their own nests in the litter on the floor.