My favorite breed so far! Pilgrims are autosexing, which attracted me to them immediately. It is simple to look at a flock of Pilgrims and know which are the ganders. Pilgrims are considered medium sized for a goose, but they are still plenty big enough to be protective of the others in their flock, and the eyesight of any goose is amazing. They will spot predators far off and sound the alarm (guineas and turkeys also have this ability).

I take away the eggs as they are laid, but if you choose to let then hatch their own, expect them to get serious about keeping you, and everyone else at a distance from the nest. I don’t find them aggressive at all when their eggs are removed daily. They start laying their first season, when less than a year old, but unlike chickens, their best years are later, and they can lay for quite a few years.

I expect to have goslings for sale in late spring through summer. The female goslings are more expensive and often in short supply. If you are looking for a flock protector that is a step up from a rooster, a Pilgrim gander is worth considering. Multiple geese will flock together, ignoring the other birds and any protection they provide is just from proximity, but a single goose (of either sex) will stick much more closely to the chickens or ducks you intend for them to protect. A gander’s principle job in life is to protect his family, so a single gander in your flock will project to would be predators that taking a bird from your flock will not be the easy job they expected. He will also probably deter any other visitors to the flock and is capable of inflicting pain on a human (as do some roosters). Proper socialization will allow you and your family to move freely in the enclosure, but most guests will be too intimidated to follow you in.