Geese are birds in the family Anatidae. There are only three genera of geese; Grey geese, domestic geese, and black geese.
There are quite a few different varieties of geese in these genera and some other bird species are also called geese.
These birds are very important and for domestic use. In the wild, geese are helpful food sources for many predators. Domesticated geese are kept and bred for their meat, eggs and especially for their luxurious goose down feathers that we use to make soft pillows and luxurious comforters.
geese are some of the easiest animals to keep. They are relatively affordable to feed and being simple-minded, these animals are fairly easy to keep content. Geese, like all other bird species, can be vulnerable to disease and they also do have a lot of predators. But if you feed your goose a healthy and balanced diet, they are usually quite resistant to illnesses and they will easily flourish.
geese are primarily herbivores but they do have a few omnivore tendencies since they can at times consume other foods.
Here is a quick look at the main foods you need to keep your gaggle of geese happy and nourished;
geese enjoy eating roots. They will munch on most root types they can find and usually consume finer or smaller pieces of tree and plant roots.
They are particularly fond of roots that grow into pounds since these are nice and soft for easy eating.
geese will chew on softer types of plant stems. They are happy to consume various natural plants and enjoy eating the stems of fruit and vegetable foods like celery, spinach, broccoli and much more. geese do not have any teeth but they can peck quite hard and they will break pieces of food off plants by making a twisting movement with their heads. In most cases, they do however prefer stems that are small and soft.
geese will eat many types of leaves. They prefer small soft leaves or small pieces of leaves. On lawns and in pastures, they will nibble off the tops of the grass.
They are also happy to consume leafy green veggies like spinach, celery, herbs, onion, carrot greens, beet greens and much more. geese owners often chop lots of greens to offer geese to help keep them nourished and healthy.
This is a goose’s favorite food. They love eating various grains and seeds. This can include a vast variety of seeds and grain like oats, wheat, sunflower seeds, nuts, corn and more. Domesticated geese that feed off pastures are often supplemented with cracked or whole corn as a treat to keep them healthy or as a means to get them to flock to their enclosures at night.
geese will consume many fruit types, especially if these fruits are cut into smaller pieces. They are especially fond of berries since these are ideal for swallowing. You can choose to offer your goose chopped apple, orange, banana, pineapple, pear, peaches, and other fruits but try not to overdo these foods.
geese can easily be raised and kept on feed. They will consume goose feed or cracked corn and are also happy to consume bird feed and chicken feed. Geese are even known to sneak other types of food pellets like dog food, cattle feed pellets and more.
geese require lots of water to flourish. Swimming is not critical for their survival but this is a huge part of their natural habitat and as such is important to them. Your geese should at the very least have access to lots of fresh water but ideally, they fair best if you allow them to swim in a pond.
geese are mostly herbivores but they can choose to consume insects. They enjoy eating small insect species like grasshoppers, crickets, moths, termites and other types of insects. These insects offer lots of protein but they only make out a small portion of a goose’s diet.
Other diet variations can include human and pet foods. geese enjoy eating a variety of human foods like bread, cake, rice, porridge, cereal and they will devour a bowl of dog kibble if they can get to it.
Most of these foods won’t harm the goose’s body but these foods are best kept in limited quantities as they might not have the needed nutrients and contain lots of added ingredients like salt that can be harmful.
geese are eager eaters and as such usually do not require much encouragement to eat at all. It is important to offer your geese a variety of healthy foods so they can build strong immune systems. The best way to do this is by allowing your geese to consume foods they find in the garden, inside a pond, and in their surroundings in addition to the feed, you offer.
To feed geese you can simply offer feed-in feeding trays or even sow it about the ground.
Consuming seeds along with sand helps them digest foods better. Foods can be sowed on the ground and even in water since geese do enjoy diving underwater to collect foods from the bottom of the pond.
Some goose farmers will offer feed like cracked corn or wheat at the bottom of a bucket of water to encourage water consumption while their animals eat.
It is better to avoid feeding a goose out of your hand. These animals can seem harmless but they do have quite a painful bite. Their beaks are strong and when they do get ahold of a piece of skin, they will twist their heads leaving your skin all purple or even torn.
The food requirements of a goose depend on its environment and its size. geese that can consume natural pastures do not require as much feed where those kept in enclosures require about 200g foods a day.
This food intake can include anything edible to them you may have to offer and a balanced quantity of fresh and dry foods are ideal.
geese eat less when they are brooding. They do however still require lots of clean water and food supplied in a container close to their nests to help keep them nourished.
Baby geese are called goslings. Goslings can be brooded by chicken hens, geese, and incubators. Goslings are ready to eat just a few hours after hatching.
In the first 10 days, goslings can be fed on poultry starter feeds. The best way to encourage feeding in new goslings is by adding foods on top of a white surface so they can see these foods easily and peck them up.
After 10 days, you can offer goslings larger pieces of food such as poultry grower feed as well as other foods like cracked corn, wheat, oats and small pieces of green foods. Ideally, goslings should have access to foods all day and self-feeders are the best way to keep them content.
Goslings are fully grown at 24 weeks and can at that point consume the same foods as any other adult goose.
In their natural habitat, geese only eat what they have available to them. This includes a versatile diet of insects, leaves, stems, seeds, roots, and aquatic plants. They spend huge portions of their day foraging for food. geese do not hibernate and as such won’t increase food consumption to gain weight. Instead, they choose to migrate to warmer areas in the wintertime.
It is great fun to sit and watch wild geese glide across a lake and to see how they enjoy munching food bits. The best foods to offer wild geese are healthy foods like cracked corn and seeds. It is also best not to offer these foods regularly as wild geese can grow accustomed to supplied feed and forego their instincts to forage for food.
geese are all too happy to eat bread and in small quantities, the bread won’t do much harm. This is however not an ideal food source.
Bread contains lots of ingredients like sugar and salt that isn’t healthy for geese. The nutritional value of bread is also low compared to their natural foods.
Ideally, you should offer bread in limited quantities and feed healthy foods like cracked or whole corn and seeds or oats.
Canadian geese can consume the same foods as any other type of geese. They spend most of their time on the water and are happy to feed on aquatic plants at the bottom of lakes. Canadian geese are also more likely than other goose species to consume insects and small fish they find in lakes and rivers.
An adult goose requires lots of food and fresh water every day. Typically, adult geese consume 200g of food a day to help keep their energy levels high. Fresh water is especially important to promote healthy bodies. geese kept in enclosures should be offered feed twice a day.
Those who can feed off pastures can find sufficient feed if you offer foods just once a day.
geese are very important animals in nature and they produce many products that humans can use.
They are also interesting and engaging animals that make great pets. Some people even choose to keep a goose pet as a security measure. They are territorial and will attack strangers or alarm you when something is wrong at night or during the day. If you take good care of your geese and offer them good quality foods they can be great companions and they can be very handy.