14 Most Popular Domestic Geese Breeds

Domestic geese are a great choice for every poultry farmer. They come from the duck family, although they have a much bigger body posture than the ducks. It is worth noting that domestic geese are pretty loyal and gentle to their owners if adequately trained.

In fact, they seem so concerned when the owner gets hurt and can show affection by simple touch with their long bill. For this reason, a considerable percentage of animal lovers choose them as pets over cats and dogs. However, if you want to enjoy a gratifying relationship with your pet geese, consider training them how to co-exist and behave around human beings early enough.

That way, your beautiful feathered friend may not become aggressive, especially around young children. Here are some of the most reliable domestic geese breeds you should consider bringing home.

African Geese

Despite their name, the African geese breed originates from China and not Africa. Still, other studies attribute the source of these birds to different continents. Other than that, some experts insist that African geese descent results from crossbreeding between Chinese geese and Swan geese.

On the other hand, others indicate that the unique traits originate from selective breeding. The birds have three color varieties; white, buff, and brown. White-colored species have white feathers with orange knobs and bills. The brown variety has black beaks and varying shades on their feathers. African geese are cost-effective pets that enjoy grass, hay, weeds, and fowl pellets.

In addition, they are famous for their mild temperament, although if not tamed well can develop a stubborn attitude. They start laying eggs at 25 weeks old and end up producing 20 to 40 pieces annually. The eggs weigh approximately 5 to 8 ounces. On average, adult African geese weigh up to 8-10 kg.

Average lifespan: 15 years

American Buff Geese

The origin of this beautiful and docile bird remains obscure. However, rumors suggest that it was created from gray geese buff mutations in Europe. The breed has brown eyes plus reddish-orange feet and bills. Also, it has a beige plumage with a pure white abdomen. American Buff geese are naturally quiet and rarely vocalize.

Moreover, they are low-budget pets who mainly feed on weeds and grass. The breed is among the largest and weighs 16 to 18 pounds when fully grown. As a result, they are preferred for meat and egg production. If you are looking for geese species with excellent parental skills, look no further.

Most impressive is that the hen becomes broody often and makes outstanding surrogate mothers. You should expect at least 15 to 25 eggs per year. Remember that these birds prefer feeding on corn, split peas, whole grains, brown rice, lentils, and sunflower seeds.

Average lifespan: 15 years

Brecon Buff Geese

This is a hearty breed of domestic geese that originated from Wales, UK.  Studies indicate that the bird is a crossbreed between Embden and buff geese from several varieties. The species is considered dual purpose because of its good meat and egg production.

The most striking straits about these birds are the buff plumage with pink legs and bills. Sometimes, you can notice orange-colored bills in a significant percentage of birds.  Depending on the feeding program, a healthy adult bird weighs 7 to 9 kg.

Thanks to their large size, they are primarily raised for meat production. However, they are excellent egg layers and may produce 10 to 30 eggs annually. Similar to their cousins, American buff, they are also excellent mothers. They are also very active, alert, and resilient to weather changes.

Average lifespan: 10 years

Buff Back/ Greyback

Greyback or Buff back are also referred to as Pied geese. The gene is prevalent in several countries neighboring the Baltic and the North Sea.  They differ in shape and size but have similar color patterns.

They were used mainly for meat production but quickly became popular among breeders who raised them to exhibit at agricultural shows. Often, they weigh around 9kg – 10 kgs.

On a good year, a buff back goose can give you 20 to 40 eggs in a year. Luckily, the birds are calm and easy to train but can become overprotective if unfamiliar people enter the territory.  A Buff goose can be grey, brown, or white with dark beaks.

Average life span: 10-16 years.

Chinese Geese

This is one of the most popular domestic geese breeds. The main reason behind this is they make excellent pets and fantastic watchdogs. Still, you have to be extremely careful around unfamiliar geese because they can become quite aggressive when provoked.

Although it is not well documented, some people believe that the birds are descendants of the wild Swan geese from Asia.

There are two types of Chinese geese; English and American. Both species mainly come in grey and white. Keep in mind that Chinese geese are relatively smaller than other breeds and weigh 8-10 lbs at full grown age. They are also excellent layers and can give you up to 80 eggs when fed well.

Akin to African geese, they are linked to the Swan goose and have similar colors and temperaments. Chinas are among the most receptive species and shout back when a familiar person talks to them. In addition, they are some of the long-living geese species documented.

Average lifespan: 10-15 years in the wild and 40 years in captivity.

Czech Geese

If you’re into hunting, then this is the breed that you should raise because of their fast flying speed and silent movements when flying. The species was first developed in Germany and has two forms; crested and without a crest. They are usually white with orange legs and beaks.

The birds have unique eyes and short, bulky necks. They can grow up to 3 feet long and weigh around 3.5-6 kg when fully grown. This breed is perfect for hobby farmers because of its grazing prowess. Compared to other species, they produce finer, tastier, and higher-quality eggs.

They are also hardy and resistant to most fowl ailments. The best thing about these birds is that they have good maternal instincts and can lay 15 to 15 eggs annually. In most cases, they are mature enough to start breeding from the third year.

Average lifespan: 8-19 years

Embden Geese

This breed originated from Germany, and they are known for their excellent egg-laying. It is also one of the oldest breeds and can grow up to 3 ft or more in length. Thankfully, their heavy size of roughly 10 kgs makes them ideal for meat production. Likewise, they have a reasonable egg production rate of 30-40 pieces.

The birds are purely white and have orange to yellow beaks with orange shanks plus a white tip. Given that they do not have a knob on the forehead, the head appears smaller.  Additionally, they have blue eyes and long slender necks (males have thicker necks).

Average lifespan: 10-15 years

Pilgrim Geese

It is not clear on the exact country of origin, but records indicate that the birds first arrived in the States around the 1930s, brought about by pilgrims. These geese are excellent dual-purpose birds that weigh 6-9 kgs. In addition, they lay 20-40 eggs every year.

They have a pleasant personality and make perfect pets even to young children. However, during the breeding period, you can notice increased aggressiveness.

They are mainly white with traces of grey here and there. Mature birds have blue eyes, orange-colored feet, and dark bills. Although it is almost impossible to distinguish between male and female breeds, Pilgrims have a unique auto-sexing characteristic.

Average lifespan: 15 – 25 years

Pomeranian Geese

This is another breed developed in Germany. Initially, it was created to produce large size breast meat. It is a magnificent bird with saddleback, white, buff, or grey varieties. They are chatty and have a docile disposition. The average body size of a Pomeranian goose is between 8 to 12 kg. The birds produce 15 to 35 eggs annually with quality shells.

Nonetheless, some individuals complain that the eggs have an undesirable taste because of a high cholesterol level. They are pretty fast and can fly up to 25 mph or more. Thus, they make perfect guards, especially if there is approaching danger.

Average lifespan: 20 – 25 years

Roman Geese

Roman geese are some of the most famous geese breeds from Italy. Mainly, it is used for ornamental and meat production. Roman geese breeds are very tame and friendly, thus making them excel in being good family pets. Often, the birds are purely white with grey variations. Furthermore, they have blue eyes and reddish-orange legs plus bills.

They may be tiny at about 4 to 5kg but have a high flying speed. Also, since this breed has a strong back, most people enroll them to participate in races. In terms of laying eggs, Roman geese usually lay around 25-30 eggs per year. Compared to other species, their eggs taste extremely good and are a delicacy in most recipes.

Average lifespan: 20 – 25 years

Sebastopol Geese

One distinctive feature of Sebastopol geese is the unkempt white feathers. Unfortunately, this unique feature makes it nearly impossible for them to fly. Nonetheless, they are excellent show birds from Europe that date back to the 20th century.

Apart from being boisterous and loud, these species are friendly. Mainly, they weigh 4 to 7 kg in adulthood. On average, Sebastopol hens can produce 25-40 eggs annually.

Average lifespan: 15 – 25 years

Steinbacher Geese

This breed is a hybrid between Sebastopol and the Magdeburg geese. Both species are great egg producers. This may be one of the few reasons why many farmers chose to mate them with other breeds to get more eggs. An adult Steinbacher weighs around 3 to 6 kg. If fed well and placed in a less stressful environment, they can produce 50 to 70 eggs annually.

Although they are friendly towards human beings, sometimes they can turn against each other. Primarily, they come in two color variations; grey and blue. They have dark brownish eyes with a yellow ring around them. Moreover, they have a dark bill with stocky bright orange legs.

Average lifespan: 20 – 25 years

Toulouse Geese

The breed is named after the Toulouse City in French, where it was developed.  In the process, experts wanted to meet the rising demand for fatty meat. The geese come in original grey color and white or buff varieties. In most cases, the plumage is softer and fuller compared to other geese species.

The male usually weighs approximately 10-12 kg and the females at about 8-9kg. Due to their heavyweight, Toulouse geese are not classified among good fliers. They are fair egg producers at around 25 to 40 eggs annually. These breeds prefer foraging for grass, weeds, seeds, and corn. You can throw in some waterfowl pellets as a treat.

Average lifespan: 20 – 23 years

West of England Geese

This is one of the rarest breeds originally from the UK. It has a unique color scheme of white, black, or gray with some blue feathers here and there. Some birds look like they have patches of paint over their bodies, which are a sight to behold.

The average weight for West of England Geese is 6 to 9 kg. Although experts classify it as a dual-purpose breed, it is more suited for meat production. They have a relatively calm demeanor and are mostly preferred as pets.

Like other geese species, they are seasonal egg layers that give you approximately 30 to 40 pieces every year.  Most impressive is that they quickly adapt to various climates and environments. In other terms, they survive harsh weather changes and are resistant to common bird diseases. Unlike other geese breeds, you can recognize the sex of your birds at an early age.

Average lifespan: 20 – 23 years

Conclusion

Goose breeds are not popular pet birds compared to ducks and chickens. Nevertheless, a significant percentage of fanatics would pick their nutritious eggs, meat, and ornamental purposes over anything else.

There is so much we can talk about domestic geese and why they are the perfect pet idea. To cut a long story short, you should only invest in these birds if you are willing to take care of them and learn more about their traits. What are you waiting for? Grab your geese friend today and start raising them now.

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