It all started about 5 years ago, when we moved into this property. I would continually joke with my wife about bringing home hens, or goats, or something… and they’d just be here when she got home one day.
It was always a “don’t you dare”… ’til one day, after a little protest, She gave in!
We both went to tractor supply, and brought home about 14 baby chicks that I let her pick out – which I was told were all supposed to be hens.
Cut to a few months later… Half are roosters, some are RiR’s, some are California Whites, One was a White Silkie, and two or three are Buff Orpingtons. Gotta say… definitely not what I wanted…
All was good, despite the breed issues.
Now, As we all know… Good things can never last if someone else has their way… and Mr. Fox had his way.
I came out one morning, and all of my chickens were gone without a trace. I gave it a few hours, and figured they were probably just out foraging. Well, Later that day around 5pm, A California white came trotting back very skeptical of her surroundings, and hid herself in the hen house. She was very clearly shaken, and very definitely had chicken PTSD due to her tendency to hide in the henhouse corners.
Since she was the last of her original group, we named her Lucky.
After a couple days of her being alone, I went to TSC and got 3 more chicks to keep her company. These were the “last” chicks of the season. Turned out, they were all Cockerels. grr…
At the same time, Lucky was being kept company by her new chickees, I had ordered some replacement Rhode Island Reds from Cackle Hatchery… and just a few days later, they came in. Lucky would now have even more friends to keep her company.
After a couple of months of chickening with the grown up Reds and Lucky, I decided I wanted to be able to free range them without fear of predation…
So I went and picked up a African Gander. They’re know to be honky, and somewhat aggressive to protect their flock when brought up with chickens. The wife was not at all happy that I bought a goose(later found to be a gander)… but when he peeked his little head out the transport box, you could see she almost instantly melted with cuteness overload.
He grew in to quite the gander. Very much on top of his game. Good ol’ Spruce goose.
Unfortunately, Sprucey had a fence accident that resulted in him passing on – which I think was instigated by the American Buff Geese I bought later on. I’ll always miss my first gander – but he inspired me to pursue waterfowl. Geese are extremely intelligent, and when they imprint on you, there’s no question in their mind that you are their mommy.
So long, Sprucey. I’ll miss my little Pilgrim.
Once Sprucey left, I had the waterfowl bug… I figured i’d give ducks a try. So I got 14 Fawn and White Indian runner ducks…
Who grew quite rapidly into Big Ducks!
During the brood time for the ducks, I wanted another goose, but wanted to go with Pilgrim geese. So I ordered 6 eggs on eBay – which were delivered a few days later.
2 were cracked.
3 had detached air sacs.
1 was literally scrambled.
So I tossed the cracked and scrambled ones, and contacted the seller who was generous enough to send me another six eggs.
Same thing on arrival –
1 had exploded in transit,
2 were cracked,
The rest were detached air sacs.
So I tossed the somewhat good ones in a incubator.. and ~28 days later…
Regina Phalange was hatched!
Out of what was ultimately a lot of wasted money and about 18 eggs from other orders, I got one goose whose the sweetest goose ever! She even has conversations with me now when I talk to her in the yard. It’s the most adorable thing ever.
For a while there, Reggie was was a lone goose. She was getting bigger, and I didn’t want Reggie to have to be alone with all the hens.
So I went and got her some friends.
Janice, Gracy and Pam Halpert.
If you look real close… you can see the gosling on the right looks a little browner. That’s because the breeder accidentally mixed in a American Buff goose with the pilgrim goslings. Still adorable, However, Janice began my foray into American Buff geese. I couldn’t get rid of her… she was just too stinkin’ cute!
So over the next few months, I acquired another Pilgrim goose and gander, and everyone kind of grew up some more… I was of course spoiling Reggie the whole time – Right though her “ugly duckling” phase.
I started looking on craigslist, and facebook for some American Buff geese… And found some who were owned by a good dude out in Western MD. I managed to load all the geese up, and got ’em home… These guys were real JERKS. Right around this time is when Sprucey had his fence accident.
Now… what does a Man do with all these Geese?
Well… well… well.. That can be answered with what breeds of geese I chose:
-American Buff geese.
Both of these geese are considered threatened, meaning that both of these heritage breeds are no longer the go-to breed for fields or tables. I wanted to be part of a solution to a problem, So I chose these breeds with the intention of breeding them and selling goslings to others for further breeding, or table birds.
So, TL;DR, The geese are for conservation breeding purposes.
And now here we are. Hens, Ducks, and Geese.
“WAIT WAIT WAIT… THE NAME! What about The DOMAIN NAME!!!”, I hear you scream.
Right. The domain name.
Well… I attribute the name to my Darling Wife and her Friends.
She and a few friends were having a little get together, and She was telling them how I had started a business named “Ryan’s Aviary”.
And of course, in their Wine-induced state of reasoning, they said that’s dumb and made fun of me some… and someone blurted out that -more or less, I’m a idiot for not naming it Ryan’s Goslings. Obviously a play on words – but made complete sense as my real name is Ryan(and have gone by Ryan for 34 years)… and I had planned on breeding and selling geese in their tiny state – goslings.
I went to the computer a logged into my friendly domain name registrar, and sure enough… RyansGoslings.com was available.
So was OnlyFowls.com too…
So here we are.
Hey. Thanks for sticking with me though this little un-organized coming-up story. If you want to know more, have questions about geese and how to care for them, or want to buy some hatching eggs or chicks/goslings, please do let me know – shoot me a email at RyansAviary@gmail.com