How and how to feed geese
Every farmer who contains domestic waterfowl should know how to feed the geese. In this case, the preparation of the diet will not tolerate a careless attitude. If the owner of the birds does not want to lose the whole herd, he will have to think carefully about how and what is the best way to feed his geese. Various cereals, vegetables, their tops and root crops, fresh grass, dry hay, as well as animal feed and animal feed can go into food. In this case, the composition of the diet should be balanced and suitable for each bird.
How to feed geese at home
What do domestic geese eat?
Poultry farmers who grow waterfowl at home need to make a diet based on local conditions and not look at how geese are fed in poultry farms. There are certain rules that must be observed when feeding these large domestic waterfowl, but first you need to decide what will go to them for food and what can not be given in any case. It should be remembered that the spring and summer diets are very different. Here's how to feed the geese at home:
- Fresh green grass or other similar food. In summer, in the grazing season, it is best to give the birds fresh grass or even let them graze in the meadow, and in winter you will have to use silage (harvested green fodder) and hay.
- Vegetables and tops of various crops. They are often given along with fresh grass in order to diversify the food of waterfowl, and for the winter, the tops are harvested by silage.
- Various root crops. They are worth mentioning separately from other vegetables as very high-calorie foods. It is the root crops used by farmers when fattening geese for meat. It is worth paying attention to potatoes, turnips, beets or carrots, although other root vegetables are also suitable. If we talk about beets, then both sugar and feed varieties are suitable.
- In the wild, geese often feed on various animal feeds, so you can give them similar food when you feed them at home. Many poultry farmers use fish waste from both marine and river or lake fish. You can still give these waterfowl skim milk (reverse) or whey. They are suitable as a basis for various cereals.
- Cereals and compound feeds. When feeding this bird, various cereal feeds and cereals based on them are often used. You can still make the basis of the diet and feed, but here we must remember that not every feed is suitable for growing domestic geese.
In this case, it is necessary to take into account the fact that different foods are suitable at different times and for different groups of birds. What is used to grow small goslings is not suitable for laying hens. And if you need to choose how to feed the geese for meat, then it is undesirable to take the same diet as for the breeding herd. And there are also different feeding options for the same season and the same birds. And they should be selected based on their capabilities and preferences. Here the role of pasture plays, the cost of various feeds and much more.
Summer feeding of domestic geese
Choosing what to feed the geese in the summer is not so difficult as deciding what will go to food in the winter. The entire warm season, while there is green grass in the meadows, these waterfowl feed on pasture. Of course, the feeding of domestic geese in the summer months consists not only of grass, but it makes up at least half of all that these birds consume. In such conditions, you need to monitor what gets into the food of domestic birds. And you need to know how to not feed geese, since not all herbs will benefit them. Some can cause severe poisoning.
Feeding can consist of herbs such as dandelion, yarrow, clover, wild sorrel and other similar plants. You can still give them nettle or plantain, provided that they grow in clean places. An ideal option would be grazing near artificial or natural reservoirs. In this case, the bird also obtains various aquatic plants, which are useful for quick weight gain. Feeding near ponds is also beneficial because of the vitamins that are necessary for the life of birds and improve the quality of meat.
The main differences of summer feeding
When feeding on pastures to geese it is enough to give food once a day. Most farmers do this in the evening in order to accustom waterfowl to the fact that you need to return to the corral on time. But you need to understand that the rate of weight gain depends not only on what the geese eat in the summer. Here a lot also depends on the chosen breed, and the methods of maintenance. Some varieties are able to feed exclusively on pasture. Others need extra nutrition to gain weight.
It is advisable to find out which herbs the geese do not like. In particular, these birds do not like sedge and goose cinquefoil. And if these plants are present in the pasture, waterfowl may refuse to feed there. But various wild and domestic herbs from the family of cereal geese are eaten with great pleasure. At the same time, they like young growth most of all. Such grass is eaten the fastest, which has a positive effect on the content of the bird. To make it grow more intensively, you can constantly manually mow the meadow.
These birds need 1.5-2.5 kg of green grass mass per day. Much depends on the breed and size of each individual goose. With pasture feeding, these needs are fully satisfied. But how to feed geese at home in the summer, when it comes to additional nutrition? Combined feeds, various root crops and cereals are suitable here. And for better assimilation of food, it is worth giving the birds a little salt, shells or chalk. If you give a small portion of such an additive every day, it will improve the growth rate.
Features of winter feeding
Norms of winter feeding of geese are very different from summer norms due to the fact that during this period it is impossible to fatten a bird on a walk. Of course, a goose is an unpretentious bird, but in order for waterfowl to gain weight faster, it is advisable to provide them with normal nutrition. Firstly, they must be fed with various grains. For example, barley, corn, oats or millet. But it is advisable to take into account that corn, both in whole form and in the form of cereals, is distinguished by calorie content. And it is not worth overfeeding birds.
When compiling a goose menu, it is recommended to use a silo. This is a specially prepared grass and vegetable tops, which has retained all its basic properties. Silage is a good substitute for grazing and allows birds to get all the necessary vitamins. It is also undesirable to forget about root crops, that is, about turnips, carrots and potatoes. But it should be remembered that the best way to poison the herd is to give germinated potatoes. Solanine is a dangerous poison for birds, and it will become very bad for such food.
You can still feed the geese with bread, flour or various leguminous plants. But here you need to understand that a large amount of this food negatively affects the health of waterfowl. At the same time, it is desirable to boil the legumes first. Excess dry food is undesirable, as it clogs the bird’s stomach. On average, one adult goose should receive from 800 g to 1 kg of food per day. At the same time, most of the diet is made up of root crops, grain and silage.
Cold Feeding Tips
Birds should be grazed until the meadows are covered with snow. This should be done, first of all, in the autumn, since in the spring grass suitable for food appears only when the warm season begins. Those birds that go for slaughter can eat simpler food, because they only need to be fed. But for the breeding herd, the diet should also include fresh fiber. Here a pre-prepared silo is suitable, which, to improve the taste, can go through yeast before use.
There is one more thing to keep in mind - the bird's diet. From the very first days of winter it should be fed 3 times a day, and all 3 winter months, the feeding time should not change. This is usually done as follows: first feeding at dawn or even before dawn. The second is at noon. The third time the birds will eat before bedtime. Each farmer sets the exact feeding time on his own. Still we must not forget about clean water, which is necessary for drinking and for rinsing the beak.
Fattening birds for slaughter
All these tips are suitable for any season, since the principles here are the same. But the brood stock should not be fed in this way: the birds will not carry eggs and bring healthy offspring. But for young animals to be sent for meat, such methods of feeding are quite suitable. It is right to start fattening monthly ducklings in order to send three-month fattened geese for slaughter. Of course, in the process of fattening, they must be additionally taken care of to avoid unnecessary deaths in the herd.
With this kind of feeding, greens and various crops are very important. Another set of masses of adult birds and young animals is suitable for various meal and protein-rich foods. But corn and other similar feed during these days is better not to give the birds. Then the bird produces too much subcutaneous fat, but the meat becomes slightly less. There should always be food in the feeders, as well as water in the drinkers.
There are two main techniques for the usual feeding of geese, which are used by farmers.
This method is used by most farmers who need to grow a population of geese for slaughter. In this case, from birth, all goslings are fed on the same principle. Until a week old, they get a mixture of boiled eggs, herbs and boiled porridge. Weekly and two-week-old babies switch to greenery, and then to pasture feeding. Three weeks after emergence from eggs, they are already divided into a breeding herd and those who go for slaughter. From this age, fattening begins in order to obtain meat.
For a meat herd you need a pasture with fresh and young grass, which geese will gladly eat. And besides this, additional nutrition will be required, which will accelerate weight gain. But how to feed geese for quick weight gain? Here, the so-called full-feed combined feeds, which are available in the form of granules, are suitable. These granules just feed the bird, both breeding and fattening for meat. But here another question arises, namely, what is the composition of compound feed for geese.
What in the end will those who buy full-feed granulated compound feed will feed the geese for weight? Wheat, corn, soy, various meal and a set of different vitamins and minerals. This is if we talk about feed for young animals. Well, bran is included in adult bird feeds, but they are made without legumes, in honesty, they usually do not include soy. Dry feed alone combined with grass may not provide the desired weight gain. To quickly feed the livestock, it is worth using grain - barley or wheat.
Forced fattening geese for meat
Forced feeding is used in cases where the bird itself is not able to gain weight at the right time. But in this case, you can’t do without additional preparation. First you need to make a bunker for one goose, in which the bird will be kept. The bunker is made so that its inhabitant moves as little as possible, but in this case it is necessary to provide him with proper care, otherwise the waterfowl will simply suffocate from their own bowel movements. Care in this situation plays a very important role.
There are two options for this kind of feeding. The first method, which is also called intensive, is used more often. In such a case, a hole is made in the bunker, through which the goose pokes its head and gets to the feeder. The bird constantly feeds itself during the day (and night) time. Feed her a mixture of cereals and a small amount of green grass and root crops. It is best to feed the goose with barley or oats, you can give some corn and wheat.
The second option of forced feeding is used in cases where you need to prepare the bird for slaughter in a short time. In this case, the goose is planted in the bunker, but food is given to him forcibly. To do this, prepare and knead a special wet mixture. It is made from salt and several types of flour, which are made from oats, wheat, bran, corn and barley. Everything is taken in equal proportions, although it is desirable to give oat flour a little more due to wheat. With constant feeding, the bird quickly gains weight.
Other feeding geese
There are several special cases of feeding geese, which the farmer should also be aware of. In particular, it must be remembered that the goose also needs a separate diet during the period when it hatches the masonry or is just about to rush. For example, for a goose, it is useful to add chopped needles to the feed, which contains vitamin C. It is useful for all birds, but its main advantage is that it increases egg growth, which is useful for geese that are not very egg-laying.
In fact, you need to feed the egg goose with the same feeds as other birds in the breeding herd. She needs high-quality hay from meadow grasses, silage is also useful. Within 20-25 days before laying the eggs, the bird will need a grain mixture, green young grass or silage, hay and clean water. The question here is how many times a day it should be fed. Experienced farmers recommend giving her food 4 times a day. The use of various vitamin supplements gives even better results before laying eggs.
Fattening geese on foie gras
Foie gras, or fatty liver, is an expensive and very delicious delicacy, which is made from the liver in a special way fattened waterfowl. Some write this name foie gras (which, in general, is incorrect). Fattening itself is uncomplicated and is a kind of forced. Up to 2 months young growth is grown according to the classical principle. At the same time, birds should not be allowed to pinch currants and gooseberries in the garden, as well as to overeat plantings of vegetables.
There is only one important difference during this period - birds are fed with corn and legumes, that is, foods that contain a lot of fats and proteins. At the same time, a 5-time power mode is set. At the age of 2.5 months, each bird should receive at least 0.4 kg of additional feed. Then the young animals are either seated in separate bins or kept crowded in one room. One way or another, the birds should move a little. After this, forced feeding begins, which is described in the video as follows:
“The geese for foie gras are kept so that they move as little as possible. Forced feeding is carried out as follows. Corn grains are poured with water at 15-20 cm and heated until all the water is absorbed. This is mixed with sunflower or olive oil, a small amount of salt is added and pushed into the throat of geese. At a time, you need to feed 0.2-0.3 kg of the mixture, but so that the bird does not suffocate. After about a month, geese can be sent for slaughter. "
Fattening geese is important when growing a breeding herd, and when preparing birds for slaughter. Making a diet is not so difficult, but it must be done. After all, only with proper nutrition will there be a profit from growing geese.