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Geese and geese share webbed toes, a department on the avian household tree, and overlapping habits and habitats. Typically you’ll have alternatives to take each geese and geese on the identical hunt, however extra typically, you’ll be extra profitable concentrating on one species or the opposite. There are variations in looking strategies for geese and geese. Each geese and geese have their followers and hunters who focus on one or the opposite. Quite a lot of us like looking each, as a result of duck vs goose looking is extra alike than it’s completely different.

Geese and Geese

Each geese and geese belong to the household Anatidae, which additionally contains swans. Most geese are larger than most geese, though some very small geese are not any larger than some giant geese. Geese are virtually utterly vegetarian, feeding on aquatic vegetation and sometimes grazing on land. The widespread conversion of America’s grasslands to agriculture turned many geese into grain feeders as nicely.

Many duck species additionally feed on aquatic vegetation and lots of additionally embody invertebrates of their weight loss plan. A few of the dabbling duck species additionally feed on land. Diving geese by no means feed on land, as a substitute preferring each vegetation and crustaceans, whereas sea geese feed on mollusks, crustaceans, small fish and some vegetation. In freshwater, the mergansers are tailored to a weight loss plan of fish.

Each geese and geese migrate, though some geese and geese are hardy sufficient to winter the place they hatched so long as they’ll discover open water and meals. And, geese and geese, in addition to swans and sandhill cranes, should all be hunted with non-toxic shot fired from shotguns holding not more than three shells, and being no bigger than 10-gauge. Waterfowl season dates are set by particular person states in keeping with a federal framework that dictates the variety of season days and allowable beginning and ending dates. Whereas seasons happen in fall and winter to focus on birds on their southward migration. There are just a few exceptions, most notably the spring snow goose conservation season, which takes place in late winter and spring.

You need to purchase each a state and federal migratory chicken stamp to hunt geese or geese. Lead shot will not be allowed for looking both, and your gun should not maintain greater than three shells in complete. Each geese and geese have sharp colour imaginative and prescient, and profitable hunters put on camo or drab clothes and ensure they’re well-concealed.


Some duck species, primarily mallards, pintails, and infrequently wooden geese and wigeon, will feed in fields as nicely. Adobe Inventory / Silvio

Together with uncommon species and unintentional guests, there are 47 completely different duck species recorded in North America. You’ll be able to divide them into puddle geese, diving geese and sea geese. Often known as dabbling geese, puddle geese tip as much as feed and often frequent shallower wetlands. Divers are birds of larger, deeper water on the entire, and as their title suggests, they dive underwater to search out their meals. Sea geese have developed to reside in saltwater. They’re champion divers routinely feeding at depths of 30-50 toes and typically extra. 


Photo of a specklebelly goose stretching its wings
White-fronted geese are primarily discovered west of the Mississippi. Additionally known as “specklebellies” for the black bars on their breasts, they’re turning into extra widespread and extra widespread amongst hunters. Adobe Inventory / Dee Carpenter

North American geese embody seven sub-species of Canada, which, collectively as the commonest and widespread geese within the U.S. and are a standard sight in parks and golf programs in addition to in wilder locales. The 4 subspecies of cackling geese have been, till just lately, categorized as Canadas however now comprise a separate species. Better and lesser snow geese breed within the arctic. All greaters and most lessers are white with black wingtips. Blue geese, that are blue-gray with white heads, are a color-phase of lesser snows, and blend in with the white birds. Ross’s geese resemble small snow geese. They’re white, and older males develop warty caruncles on their payments. Typically they combine with snows, typically they fly in flocks of their very own.

White-fronted geese are primarily discovered west of the Mississippi. Additionally known as “specklebellies” for the black bars on their breasts, they’re turning into extra widespread and extra widespread amongst hunters.

Lastly, brant are small geese that winter alongside the East and West Coasts and infrequently come inland.

Duck vs Goose Looking

The most important distinction relating to duck vs goose looking is that the majority goose looking takes place on dry land, whereas most duck looking happens over water. That’s not a tough, quick rule. A number of species of puddle geese could be hunted in fields, and geese could be shot over water. It’s typically attainable to hunt each geese and geese on the similar time, both in fields or on the water. Nevertheless, the overwhelming majority of goose hunts happen in harvested grain fields. Some duck hunts, do, too, however most hunters arrange over water for geese.

Duck vs Goose Water Looking

Photo of a gun dog retrieving a goose during a hunt
Sometimes, hunters set duck decoys early within the morning, as that’s when the birds are essentially the most lively. Adobe Inventory / LemieuxImages

All duck and goose species could be hunted over water—marshes, ponds, lakes, and rivers—the place geese feed. They may also loaf through the day and roost at evening on water. A decoy unfold can work any time of day as long as you may have scouted the realm beforehand to know when the birds might be there. Sometimes, hunters set duck decoys early within the morning, as that’s when the birds are essentially the most lively.

Geese, however, usually roost on the water in a single day, then fly out to feed in fields within the morning and within the afternoon. Water spreads for geese often are handiest when yow will discover a loafing space and set as much as hunt it mid-morning to mid-afternoon, to catch birds as they return from the fields on the lookout for a spot to sit down down. With each geese and geese, looking the roost within the late afternoon could be very efficient, nevertheless it’s frowned upon as a result of disrupting a roost can push birds out of the realm.

Discipline Looking

All geese, aside from brant, could be hunted over dry grain fields, hayfields, and pastures the place they arrive to feed on waste grains or grasses. Some duck species, primarily mallards, pintails, and infrequently wooden geese and wigeon, will feed in fields as nicely.

Greater than some other sort of looking, discipline looking calls for scouting. You need to set your decoys within the discipline the place the birds are feeding, or in a discipline on the flight line to the feed discipline. It’s troublesome to tug them off that line into a special discipline regardless of what number of decoys you set. Profitable goose hunters spend as a lot time scouting as they do looking.

Duck vs Goose Move-and-Bounce Taking pictures

Photo of hunters sitting in a blind waiting to pass-shoot at geese during a hunt
Move taking pictures entails studying what routes the birds wish to journey, hiding inside gun vary, and taking pictures them as they move by. Adobe Inventory / Colby

Two strategies that don’t contain decoys can each be efficient on geese and geese. Move taking pictures entails studying what routes the birds wish to journey, hiding inside gun vary, and taking pictures them as they move by. The distinction in duck vs goose move taking pictures is that on the entire, move taking pictures for geese takes place close to water, as in a neck that connects two marshes, or a levee between ponds. Move taking pictures for geese is commonly a dry-land affair. It was very talked-about round refuges. Now it’s not practiced as a lot, but when yow will discover a spot geese fly over that places them in gun vary, you’ll be able to pass-shoot them as they exit to feed or return.

Bounce taking pictures means sneaking up on resting birds, startling them into flight and taking pictures them on the rise. Bounce taking pictures geese often takes place on streams, rivers, or in small wetlands or ponds. Geese can typically even be jumped in comparable spots, and a few individuals will crawl inside vary of feeding flocks, particularly of snow geese. Relating to the precise taking pictures a part of soar taking pictures, puddle geese can spring up off the water whereas geese should labor throughout the water to get airborne. Leaping puddle geese could be difficult. Bounce taking pictures geese can typically really feel too straightforward, however it may additionally repay in a goose dinner.

Duck vs Goose Decoys

As a rule of thumb, you’ll be able to shoot geese over goose decoys, however you’ll not often shoot geese over duck decoys. Goose decoys are seen from distant, and geese can really feel safe in amongst geese. That’s true in fields and on water. Geese don’t wish to land with geese, though typically when you have a goose name you’ll be able to pull them into your duck unfold.

Duck vs Goose Movement

Movement within the decoys is essential with each geese and geese. When looking over water, something that makes ripples on a peaceful day, whether or not it’s a jerk string or movement decoy. One of the widespread sorts of movement decoys for geese is the spinning wing sort, whereas geese will draw back from spinners. The most effective movement for geese is a goose flag, additionally known as a T-flag, which you wave by hand, and it may be very efficient at lengthy distances.

Duck vs Goose Calling

One of many largest variations relating to duck vs goose calling is that each one geese are vocal within the air, whereas most geese are quiet within the air more often than not. Usually, it’s the honking (or barking or yodeling, relying on the species) of a flock within the air that alerts you to the presence of geese. They’ll strategy silently at instances, nevertheless. How a lot noise the geese are making will help you determine how a lot you must name. If they’re loud, you’ll be able to often reply aggressively. In the event that they aren’t making a lot noise, just a few clucks is likely to be a better option. You can even watch how the flock reacts. Geese will provide you with loads of vocal cues, although.

Calling geese means studying their physique language, on the lookout for a turned head or a faltering wingbeat, then specializing in that particular person chicken. Often you’ll hear geese quacking within the air, typically misplaced single birds. With these birds, you’ll be able to keep on a dialog as you’ll with geese.

Duck vs Goose Weapons and Masses

The smallest geese and the most important geese are roughly the identical measurement, so it stands to purpose that weapons and hundreds for geese and geese may differ. Typically, you want larger shot to hit tougher and penetrate deeper into larger birds, whereas a great deal of smaller shot offer you extra pellets in every shell, the higher to insure important hits on smaller birds. With metal shot, most goose hunters selected sizes 2 or bigger (1, BB, BBB) whereas duck hunters favor 2 or smaller (3,4,5, even 6 and seven for the smallest geese). In an effort to get enough pellet counts of huge shot, you want a giant hull, which implies a bigger gun. Most goose hunters select a 12-gauge, and lots of of them favor to make use of 3 1/2-inch shells. Duck hunters additionally shoot 12-gauges, although the usage of 20- and 28-gauges has develop into a development lately.

Duck vs Goose for Dinner

Lastly, there may be the style. Each are scrumptious when cooked correctly, with some caveats. What birds style like is determined by what they’ve been consuming. Typically, birds which were consuming grain or vegetation will style higher than those who feed on crustaceans, mollusks and, particularly, fish. It’s laborious to make a fish-eating duck style good, and whereas mollusk-eating sea geese could be tasty, it takes some work within the kitchen to cook dinner them proper. Then again, a rice- or corn-fed puddle duck is certain to be scrumptious.

Geese, which feed totally on grain, are additionally excellent to eat. Goose could be more durable than duck, so the meat must be sliced skinny or it may be chewy. 

Each geese and geese have darkish crimson breast meat that ought to be cooked uncommon and if it doesn’t overcook, it tastes just like beef. Cooking both an excessive amount of brings out a liver-taste that most individuals don’t like. The legs of each geese and geese could be slow-cooked very efficiently. You can even render goose and duck fats for frying potatoes and different issues.

Some hunters favor geese as a result of they yield a lot extra meat that may be made into jerky or meat sticks. The proper reply to duck vs goose for dinner is each.

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