Do Geese Lay Eggs in Winter?
Geese are seasonal layers and usually stop laying in winter because their laying capabilities depend entirely on seasons. Like chickens and ducks, geese will lay consistently once they start laying. However, their egg production will slow in winter, and your geese will probably not lay in winter.
The explanation for why female geese don’t lay in winter is that there are fewer daylight hours during the cold season. Exposure to daylight hours affects egg production in birds, including geese.
When do Geese Usually Lay Their Eggs?
Geese usually start laying in the next spring after the onset of the mating season. The laying months for these birds begin in February and end in the fall of May. The Young hens that are laying for the first time will lay their first eggs at the end of the mating season. Unlike chickens and some duck breeds, geese don’t lay many eggs after reaching maturity.
They normally lay between 30 and 50 eggs annually. If you think about it logically, it isn’t practical for geese to lay in winter. These birds dedicate much of their energy to keeping themselves warm. Wild geese don’t lay in the cold months because the freezing temperatures can’t allow their reproductive systems to function normally.
Why did My Goose Lay Eggs in Winter?
Although geese rarely lay in winter, it’s possible to find one or two geese eggs in the coop. Thus you could be wondering why your goose is laying eggs in winter. One possible explanation for your bird laying in winter lies in its breed. Some Chinese geese breeds, for instance, can continue laying eggs in winter.
The choice of diet you provide to your bird could also prompt it to lay in winter. For example, your goose could be eating plenty of protein during the cold months, encouraging its reproductive system to work normally even during winter.
Cold-hardy goose breeds are also likely to lay occasionally in winter, especially when such species are living in warmer conditions during winter.
Ideally, geese and other birds don’t lay in winter because there are shorter days during the cold months. The daylight reduction impacts egg production; therefore, it’s rare to see your goose laying. Your goose could be laying if you have been providing it with enough light during the day, which ultimately encourages egg production.
Otherwise, even a healthy female won’t lay in winter because of the reduction in daylight hours. Young female geese about to start laying are more likely to lay in winter because there are highly productive, unlike older females.
Therefore, it isn’t unusual to discover that one of the young females in the flock could be laying in the cold season. Nevertheless, there is a low probability of a young female laying in winter.
Do Geese Mate in Winter?
The mating season for geese can extend from mid-winter all the way to early spring. Geese are monogamous birds; one male will mate with a single female year round. Nonetheless, the female won’t pick another male to form a pair if it loses a male.
Geese can mate in winter although mating during the cold season is less frequent among these birds. After all, geese are inactive, and males could be less eager to mate.
Can Geese Lay Unfertilized Eggs?
Yes, geese can lay unfertilized eggs because their egg production doesn’t entirely depend on mating. Geese belong to a family of birds whereby female birds don’t necessarily need the presence of males to lay. Females, therefore, will lay eggs even though no males are around.
However, the eggs won’t hatch because they are infertile. Interestingly, female geese won’t discard or abandon the infertile eggs. Instead, they will sit on the eggs hoping they will hatch. The ultimate way to ensure your female geese lay fertile eggs is by keeping the females together with males.
The number of females in the flock should be equivalent to the number of males because geese being monogamous, will form pairs that will mate throughout their lives.
Can Goose Lay Multiple Times a Year?
Geese aren’t the best layers compared to birds like quails, ducks, and chickens. It’s unlikely for these birds to lay multiple times a year. Being seasonal layers, geese won’t lay eggs year-round. That’s what makes them different from ducks and chickens, which are capable of laying multiple times a year.
Thus, geese aren’t dependable birds to keep for egg production. Geese will only lay between 30 and 50 eggs per year. Even the best laying goose species, such as the Canadian goose, will only lay a couple of eggs before going broody.
What to do With Goose Eggs in Winter?
Winter will not only make geese stop laying but also make it difficult to keep geese eggs in winter because the eggs freeze during winter. However, you can consider keeping the geese’ eggs for later use during winter.
Nonetheless, you must store the eggs properly before they freeze due to the cold. You can wrap the eggs with soft, thick clothing to ensure they retain stable temperatures that won’t make them freeze.
Or, you can keep the eggs at room temperature if you are considering storing them for several weeks. Otherwise, the cold temperatures will ruin the eggs, and they won’t be edible within days if you don’t keep them at room temperature. The best temperature to keep eggs in winter should be approximately 45 degrees Farenheight.
You can achieve this temperature by keeping the eggs on the counter, although you have to put clothing below the eggs. Furthermore, cover the eggs with clothing to ensure they don’t freeze due to the cold coming from above.
Ideally, you should eat the eggs if you can’t store them at stable temperatures during winter. Alternatively, you can sell the geese eggs or give them out to friends or family who love geese eggs.
Geese are seasonal layers, meaning these birds won’t lay all year round. Again, geese cannot maintain their egg production in the cold months.
Thus, you shouldn’t expect your geese to produce eggs in the winter, although one or two geese in your flock will lay occasionally during the winter months, depending on diet and the amount of daylight these birds get.