Chinese Geese

Chinese GooseUses: Utility – eggs and meat.
Eggs: 40 to 80 white eggs per year.
Weight: Gander: 4.5 – 5.5 Kg. Goose: 3.5 – 4.5 Kg.
Colours: Grey, White.
Useful to Know: At 8 weeks of age, the size of the basal knob can be used to sex goslings. The knob is larger on ganders than on geese.
Chinese geese are some of the noisiest geese and are useful as a ‘guard dog’ / to alert you of intruders. They can be too noisy though if you have near neighbours so make sure you see some before you buy them. Chinese are highly productive, being some of the best geese for producing eggs.
Photo: A Grey Chinese Goose.

Chinese Geese are known as Höckergänse in Germany and Oies de Chine in France. The Chinese Goose is a descendent of the wild Swan Goose. They come in two colour varieties, grey and white. The grey Chinese Geese look similar to African Geese who are also descendents of the wild Swan Goose however they are a much lighter build.

There are two distinct types of Chinese in the UK, an elegant exhibition strain that was introduced during the 1970’s from America and a heavier English dual purpose utility type of bird.

Chinese geese are quite a popular breed for their looks as well as their suitability as ‘guard dogs’. They are very alert and curious and can be rather noisy when strangers are about.

The temperament of Chinese geese can be quite different between strains although, as with other geese, their upbringing has a lot to do with their temperament. Care should be taken with ganders if the goose is sitting on eggs as they have been known to take a strong disliking to visitors at this time! Geese are known to go broody easily as well as being good layers of eggs.

The number of eggs a Chinese will lay is again dependent on the strain. They are reasonably good layers and a reasonable strain will lay around 50 white eggs per year although some have been known to lay more than 80 eggs.

By about 8 weeks of age, the size of the basal knob can be used to sex goslings. The knob is smaller in the goose than it is in the gander.

Chinese geese were admitted to the American Standard of Perfection in 1874 and into the British Waterfowl Standards much later in 1954.



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  • I would wait until the spring before accepting that they are both female. Males are usually the ones that get dumped and rescued…

    Chinese Geese are good layers so if they are both female, you should see eggs in the spring.

    • constance rogers

      I always thought with fowls that there was a color difference for males and famales, with males being the most vividly colored. Does this not stand true with geese?

      • Some breeds have colour differences between male and female but others don’t. As they grow up, it’s usually size and behaviour that gives the males away.

        Male and female Chinese geese have the same colour pattern but they can usually be sexed by the size of their basal knob when you have a few to compare with. As the breeding season comes, there will be obvious differences in behaviour and egg laying of course.

  • Waterfowl will stay out all night if you let them. They are quite active at night and can see well in the dark.

    Some people leave them out in a secure enclosure, others lock them up. I lock mine up for piece of mind and to stop them honking in the night and disturbing the neighbours. You can herd them by holding your arms outstretched.

    For nesting, when the goose wants to sit, she will make a nest out of whatever is available, so you can provide straw or other material in the area you’d like her to nest in.

    • constance rogers

      They are secure within a fenced area and no close neighbors. I guess that’s good for them! Haha, we don’t hear them at night either.

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