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Electric net fencing for geese?

 
Nina Jay
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Location: Southern Finland, mean annual temp +4 C, rainfall 700 mm, growing season 180 days, clay soil.
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I'm been thinking about getting geese for some time now but still wondering about the fencing. I think I'd have to have some kind of fencing because our dog (the giant schnauzer) just loves chasing birds and they'd get no rest from the dog. Also I've heard that geese can get aggressive and we have children so I don't want the geese hanging around our porch...

Electric net fencing seems ideal as it's easy to move. Electric fencing would probably also be great at keeping the foxes away? But some people say geese can get stuck in the net and die of shock. Others say it's no problem and electric net works really well. Seen it used in videos etc. seemingly with no problems.
But I'd greatly appreciate your views or experiences!

One thing I'm also wondering is how well electric net fencing works on pasture. I guess the grass has to be quite short for electricity not to "escape" on wet weather? I have used electric line fencing for horses and if the lowest line is very low there can be a problem on when it rains: wet grass touches the line and no electricity.
 
John Polk
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You bring up some good questions here.
I have personally never owned geese but have been around a lot of them.

Fully grown, mature geese are very territorial.
Many people keep them as 'watch dogs'.

I had not thought about the problem of them getting caught in the netting, but it seems like that could be a real concern. The geese would try to poke their heads through the net as soon as they saw something of interest on the other side. ZAP. Try to pull their head back...ZAP again.

If you are starting with mature geese, the dog would probably try once to get at them before learning his lesson. With goslings however, he could quickly wipe out the flock.

The exact opposite would be true for geese/children. With mature geese, they would likely attack a small child entering their territory, but if raised with the children, they would more likely accept the children as a part of their territory.

Regardless, you do NOT want them on your porch. Meet "Mr. & Mrs. Crapalot".

 
Nina Jay
Posts: 85
Location: Southern Finland, mean annual temp +4 C, rainfall 700 mm, growing season 180 days, clay soil.
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Thank you very much for your thoughts!

I found a site by a company called Flyte So Fancy selling poultry equipment and there they answered the question like this:

"Can I use electric netting with Ducks and Geese?

We would not advise this form of fencing for ducks and geese. We learnt this many years ago when we lost both ducks and geese that had become entangled in netting and died. Waterfowl have a tendency to try and walk through the flexible netting for some reason; they don't see it as an obstruction and then cannot get free. For waterfowl we advise either wooden or plastic posts and then insulators to carry either tape or wire in a more rigid way so they cannot become entangled."

I've heard this answer before but I haven't heard anyone recommending tape or wire electric fencing for geese. Or did I understand correctly that this is what they recommend? This was the full text there was nothing more on the subject. The word "insulator" to my mind suggests that they are talking about electric fences.

But couldn't a goose get tangled in a line fence just as well or even more easily than in an electric net?

Electric line fencing would of course be a perfect answer if it were to work, because we already have many kilometers of electric line (and wire!)
 
d.a. vatalaro
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Nina Jay wrote:
"Can I use electric netting with Ducks and Geese?
'We would not advise this form of fencing for ducks and geese.'


Interesting, I'd never read that before! We used electric poultry fencing for our geese and it worked well. We got our fence from Premiere One, and loved it. Premiere One's Poultry Page (I am not a shill, I promise

Yes, you do have to keep the fence area mown down to ensure the electricity doesn't get "grounded out". We'd take up the fence, mow the fenceline down, then put the fence back up. Every night, I'd walk the perimeter looking for weeds, twigs or other things that might be touching the fence. If I stayed mindful, all it took was a few scissor snips to keep up with initial re-growth, but after a few weeks, we'd need to mow again.

Our geese never got stuck in the fence, but our acreage is surrounded by goat fencing and guarded additionally by a couple of livestock guardian dogs. The geese were rarely spooked, and the fenced area was generously large - more than enough room to roam freely. We kept the fence in one place, as it was just for night protection; we let them free-range during the day. For added protection, we put up a small length of metal fence with an opening just inches paralleled inside from were we would open the electric fence to discourage "stampeding" into the gate in the morning, when they saw us coming to let them out. We'd open the fence, then roll back the internal metal fence and let them out.

WRT geese & children: yes, geese are bullies, and when they see anything "their size" that is not another familiar goose, they will often go after it - especially small children! And during egg-laying season, even the most gentle hand-reared geese can get a bad case of "the crabby". I don't think that's a reason not to have geese, but if you don't have the energy to watch after all the time or the safe space for the youngsters to hang out before they're big enough to understand how to manage geese, then it's wise to wait. Oh, and that electric poultry netting gives a wicked shock - if you have children, keep them well away. There have been serious injuries to toddlers who've crawled into this kind of netting.

Last but not least, porch geese == poo-pocalypse. I have to spray my porch down most evenings. I'm fine with doing that - it fertilizes the flower beds - but it's Yet Another Task on the list of regular chores.

Good luck to you!
 
Kelly Smitherson
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Well, we have geese and four young children, aged 1 year to 9 years old.
When we first got the geese, they would mess with my 6 year old, the other kids showed them right off the bat who was boss, the 6 year old took a while to learn how to tell 'em - but a few weeks/months later, the geese have the run of the place, as do my kids, and they all get along fantastic. Geese can be bullies, but it was a good lesson for my kids to learn how to handle bullies. Some of kids figured it out right off the bat, but like my 6 year old, she needed more time, and the geese being bullies saw she was afraid and bullied harder. I remember when she finally figured it out. She was afraid, and asked me to get the geese away. I stood by her, and handed her a stick and told her to handle it. Now, you never hit a goose with a stick. That would be mean and no need. BUT a stick does make a small person look bigger. So they pointed their stick and the geese and yelled "GO ON!" as they advanced on the geese and made them back off. So, my 6 year old takes the stick, and says "I may be wearing my pretty ooo la la dress and my fancy click clack shoes, but I am still FIERCE! NOW GO ON! " and they of corse being bullies do turn tale when you confront them. I do not think this was a bad lesson for my kids to learn. Even my one year old will point her fat finger at them and tell em what she thinks. We all get along fine nearly all the time though.
Breeding season is another story, we still get along, but we modify the rules and space.
Geese are good watch dogs, but they also know the kids belong here.

If a hawk swoops low, the chickens run for cover, the geese run out yelling something like "what, you want to go hawk? bring it! right here, you feel lucky punk?!" My translation might be off, but they are very macho about standing off areal predators

net fencing- we have it for chickens and some other stock, but never used it with the geese, so sorry, can not answer there

the other thing worth mentioning is that my chickens, ducks and turkeys park out in front of the feed bin for a while each day, those geese go out and forage all day long, they cost me nothing. I put them in the barn at night and give them a cup of milk or a cup of something to show them I appreciate them coming in and working hard on our place. They are pleasant animals and easy keepers imo.
 
Thekla McDaniels
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d.a. vatalaro wrote:
Nina Jay wrote:
"Can I use electric netting with Ducks and Geese?
'We would not advise this form of fencing for ducks and geese.'


and then d.a. vatalaro wrote:

Interesting, I'd never read that before! We used electric poultry fencing for our geese and it worked well. We got our fence from Premiere One, and loved it. Premiere One's Poultry Page (I am not a shill, I promise

Yes, you do have to keep the fence area mown down to ensure the electricity doesn't get "grounded out". We'd take up the fence, mow the fenceline down, then put the fence back up. Every night, I'd walk the perimeter looking for weeds, twigs or other things that might be touching the fence. If I stayed mindful, all it took was a few scissor snips to keep up with initial re-growth, but after a few weeks, we'd need to mow again.
____________

And this is my part here: (still haven't figured out how to make the quote thing work)

I'm a little late to the party, but I too have used the premier1 electric fencing (for my goats) and find it to be good. I first heard of it here on permies.com, and I was not mislead.

About the weeds or grass touching the mesh and bleeding the charge away: When I bought my set up, I only bought one length of mesh. They say the "weed load" is factored in, and they rate the energizer I bought to power 6 times the length of mesh I bought. When I am not attentive, then the amount of charge going through goes from 8000 volts to 2000 volts, which is still enough to be important to the goats. I guess my point is, yes, it matters, but the people who built it are not imagining a world where the plants in the pasture do not grow, or that a farmer who just lives to mow under the fence line. Even in the rain, and with wet grass, today I was getting 8000 volts. They sell a handy thing to check that the electricity is getting through. I used it a lot when I was getting to know the materials and system, but now I trust it.

When I get geese, I'll get some more mesh I guess, then try to figure out how to run the goat and geese on the same energizer.

Thekla
 
Sue Rine
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Location: New Zealand
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I just started using a 150metre length of electronetting around my 7 geese and after about a week there has been no problem.
 
Rachael Brown
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I was given some electric net fencing by an ex chicken farmer. We used it just to keep our goslings from any danger, but did not have it 'live'
Sadly one of my goslings got caught up in it & must have died very quickly from the shock. (trying to get the one bit of grass on the other side)
I would never have thought this to be a concern.. So obviously I would never recommend using this to any one.
Utterly heartbroken.
 
Thekla McDaniels
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so sorry, Rachel about your gosling. I love goslings and have lost a few. It is sad.

I am confused about how the incident occurred. If the mesh was not "live", then it could not have shocked the gosling. The poor little thing could have died from being stuck or strangled, which could happen in any kind of netting where it could get its head through.

I had a gosling when my son was 2. He was not very far from the ground, and he accidentally dropped the gosling. The gosling died, with the only apparent reason being the fall of 18 inches. I guess they are more fragile than they appear.


thekla
 
Sue Rine
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I've been using electric net fencing to move our geese every few days during our southern hemisphere autumn and now into winter. There's been no problem, but they are all adults. They will be back in their very large free range paddock before they start laying. By the way, we've never had any problem with them attacking, even when they have goslings. They are Sebastapols so I don't know whether breed is a factor. When moving them, the trick is to stay about 2metres from them and move slowly towards them. They hiss but move away with no problem. We also don't feed them anything as they are grazers. I probably is the reason they don't have lots of fat on them when we kill them. I know people rave about goose fat but, hey, you can't have everything.
 
Thekla McDaniels
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Sue,

Are Sebastapols the ones I call ballerina geese, with the ruffled curly feathers? I saw and coveted those, years ago. At the time the goslings were 50 dollars apiece, and if that wasn't a big enough deterrent, there was a limit to how many you could order, and it did not come up to the minimum number of goslings in an order.

I LOVE them. But I worried that they had been bred for looks and may have lost survivability traits.

Am I htinking of the right ones? And apparently yours are survivors. Too bad I'm so far away, (North America) or I'd try to work a way to buy some.

Thekla
 
Sue Rine
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Location: New Zealand
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Yes, they are the ones with ruffled feathers. I gather that there are no ponger any purebred ones here and, sure enough, amongst the offspring there are some smooth feathered ones. Also, they show tge colour differentiation between male and female, with the females being grey and the males white. I believe that pur Sebastapols are all white. Still, they're kinda cute with their ruffly tutus and ours certainly aren't pampered.
 
Deedles Johnson
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Also late to the discussion, but I'd like to add that just this morning we pulled 3 ducks out of the electric fence. 1 was dead and the other 2 quite tangled up. Last time we'll be leaving them out of their house at night. We have the premier 1 fencing as well. It makes me sad to think that one duck took all those shocks as the battery was dead this morning.
 
Ann Torrence
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We had to turn ours off during goose breeding season. The ganders were pushing each other into the fence, bullies.

Turned it back on yesterday because we have a puppy we want to keep out of the goose pen. One goose got one shock, they all remembered "that fence bites" and backed off. Quite remarkable that the others could learn by observation. But it's back off, we needed the power supply elsewhere.
 
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