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#57661 - 08/08/02 11:51 AM winter feed for geese
Anonymous
Unregistered


Hello out there!

I originally posted this question in the "Poultry" section, and I did get good advice! (So thank you much to anyone also reading this section) Now that I've discovered the Waterfowl section I am hoping to get even more. So here goes... I live in Northern Wisconsin (really cold, snow from Nov to April). I'll obviously need to supplement my forage only geese with some grain and hay. Does anyone know how much. One excellent suggestion earlier was 4lbs oats, 2lbs corn, 2lbs laying mash for 36 chickens and 2 geese. (So thats about .25 pound of mixture per bird) That sounds about like what I usually do. Any other opinions? My chickens dont like the hay. I am wondering how crop bound my geese might get with dry, icky hay. I've also heard to not supplement with laying mash until a month before I want my female pilgrim goose to start her laying.... Any thoughts on that?

Thanks.

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#57662 - 08/08/02 06:05 PM Re: winter feed for geese
Tiny Offline
Bantam

Registered: 07/16/02
Posts: 67
Loc: Wisconsin
We live in Wis to and I have 25 pound feeds that I fill for the geese. They feed when they want. I fill the feed with corn and scrach feeds. We have the barn heated to about 40 degrees so the water will not freeze .We sread paper for beding and clean it out once a week this works for the duck and the geese.

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#57663 - 08/08/02 06:11 PM Re: winter feed for geese
Rob Offline
Ruler of the Roost

Registered: 07/16/02
Posts: 783
Loc: Pennsylvania
The geese will eat the leafy part of the hay and you shouldnt have a problem if you feed grit. You can feed some alfalfa pellets, which look like rabbit pellets, instead of hay. I like to give the geese ear corn. They have something to do while earning their dinner. They can shell an ear pretty quick. You really dont have to be too scientific on feeding. Feed what is economical, vary the feed stuff, and handle the animal to feel condition. Unless you are after top egg production, laying ration arent needed if they have a good varied diet.I use a vitamin, mineral in the water now and then.

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#57664 - 08/09/02 06:49 AM Re: winter feed for geese
Anonymous
Unregistered


Hello tiny,

So how do you heat your barn? Our water freezes inside the barn; I drain the well pump spiquot every year so we actually cart water from the house. I suppose we should get one of those nifty water tank heaters but (there is a lot of things I could get for my barn and I have to restrain myself)... We keep our 10 sheep inside for the winter and that helps until about January. You actually heat the barn huh? What do you use and what does it cost per year?

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#57665 - 08/15/02 03:41 AM Re: winter feed for geese
Nikki Offline
Coop Cleaner

Registered: 07/19/02
Posts: 181
Loc: Michigan
lala, you don't say but do you have electric in your building, if you do could you use a heat tape on your pipes. If its where the animals can bother it, I would block it or cover it with something so they couldn't chew on the heat tape. I don't have water in my building at this time, but I have a 55gal pickle barrel, my hubby put a spiquot in. Someday I hope to have running water. :rolleyes: As for the hens and the hay, come winter when they can't get out, this will give them something to do so, they are not bored. I only have a pair of geese in with my hens in 15x20 pen the key is to keep everybody busy so they don't get bored. Try tossing a little oats on the hay so the hens will hunt for the burried treasure. Just besure and remove any hay that gets wet. Thats my biggest problem with keeping geese with chickens, they like to splash the water, and wet straw an hay can cause health problems. All this talk of winter eek ya got ta love it to live in the north county. smile

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#57666 - 08/15/02 08:18 AM Re: winter feed for geese
Anonymous
Unregistered


Hello,

Oh yes we have electricity in the barn. Until 5 years ago it had milking cows and everything! But....I am very picky about my energy usage, especially for animals, and it is an investment (as much time as money) to keep the water running in the barn all winter. Heat tape didn't always work and when it doesn't the well pump pipes could be damaged (that was year 1) I am looking at building an enclosure with a small heat source within that etc...yeah...some day. Hauling buckets in -30 weather isn't fun but it saves on a gym membership. (this is what I say in the summer, now ask me again come Febuary and I wont be so happy) I am always on the lookout for more innovative ways to address this problem, not that I am sure I'll find one. We've inherited a solar collecter, works well for the house and we may move it someday to the barn. We could also use more Southern windows for light... I'd also thought of somehow using my chickens' light source (I do supplement light) as a small heat source/base for my waterers. Unfortunately the cost of the glass block/etc to do that negates any savings. I have this hangup that if I am going to spend too much money on my animals I should first donate at least an equal amount to a human charity, IE third world famine relief. It really limits what I can do. Anyway.. This is my first year for geese though and me, ms. tightwad, doesn't want to feed too much store bought feed. I'll probably keep them in a seperate room from the chickens with free access to outside. I am interested to see how much time they'll spend out there. I like my chickens because they are like pigs, they eat all leftovers (and stinging nettle!). So far I havent seen the geese attack stinging nettle or canadian thistle, which would be fantastic if they did. Thanks and Have Fun!

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#57667 - 08/16/02 06:58 AM Re: winter feed for geese
Bruce Smith Offline
Coop Keeper

Registered: 07/17/02
Posts: 560
Loc: Michigan
Consider building a very stout little "shed" for the area where your water pipe comes up out of the floor in the barn. Insulate this heavily and tightly with 2 inch rigid foam and make sure the door seals tightly. The space can be just big enough to reach in and turn a valve, with just a few cubic feet total. As you build the enclosure, install an outlet, and use this to hold two light bulbs. On all but the coldest nights, one bulb (130v 75w?)should provide plenty of heat to keep everything warm inside. If you properly install a frost-free faucet which sticks out the side of the enclosure (it must slant slightly downward toward the spout), you can have running water any time you want it without opening the enclosure. Insulate this pipe inside the enclosure with flexible foam pipe wrap and fasten it securely. If you put a test tube through the wall and cover the open end with plastic or glue on a piece of glass, you can tell by looking through it whether the light bulb is on. Our barn well uses this kind of setup, and it is about four feet sqare inside and about four feet tall. Even a space that big is kept in the 50 degree F range with one bulb most of the time. Make sure the bulbs are not too close to surfaces that may be flammable. Hope this helps.

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#57668 - 08/16/02 07:41 AM Re: winter feed for geese
Anonymous
Unregistered


Well THANK YOU!

I was guessing to do something like that. I thought it would work but wasn't sure about dimensions etc. It is good to hear that this set up works for you. I really like the idea about the test tube visual check. I don't think I would have included that in my design. COOL! Thank you so much!

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