Ask Dave: Duck, Chicken, GOOSE!

Posted on March 3, 2014 by

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Dear Dave,

 I have been told that chicken eggs are no longer going to work for me but to give duck or goose eggs a try – why would they be so different?  

 Annie, ID

Dear Annie,

Very timely question Annie – many people I know are facing this issue right now.  I’ll explain some of the ways that ducks and geese differ from their less aquatic cousins:

DIET:

CHICKEN:  Chickens are fed LOTS of corn, wheat, and soy.  This is not their ‘ancestral’ diet, but a cheap way to utilize the massive stockpiles of industrial grains that would otherwise turn into biofuel or other ridiculous wastes of time.

DUCK/GOOSE:  Many ducks and geese are not fed supplemental layer mash.  They eat algea, insects, aquatic & terrestrial plants, and anything else that looks good!  By comparison, some chickens ONLY eat the layer mash that they are provided.

BREEDING:

CHICKEN:  If we want eggs, and chickens lay eggs, don’t we just pick the chickens that lay the most eggs and breed those?  YES, if you want a narrow gene pool and more chances for defects, deficiencies, and less diversity.  Whoever designed the first chicken (Thank You!) had some kind of cool idea of an animal that gives us food – and gets to keep living.  The eggs were small and sporadic, and we had to find them in the bushes.  Now we have caged white idiot birds that lay an egg a day like clockwork.  White.  Same Size.  Same Uniform.  We have turned the barnyard into an Aryan Parade.

DUCK/GOOSE:  What may have been lost in the narrow world of chicken is found in the diversity of ducks and geese.  While there are breeds of both that have been commercially bred specifically for meat or paté, there are still scores of ‘heirloom’ breed that add color, texture, and variety to both the egg & the layer.

FRESHNESS, OMEGA’s, TEXTURE:

Chicken eggs have thinner shells = more evaporation through the shell = eggs spoil quicker.  Duck eggs are thicker – and goose eggs are THICK!

Chicken eggs contain omega 3’s – but ducks and geese have more!

Duck & Geese eggs contain more albumen – this makes baking results come out thicker & fluffier.  Most people find the taste richer as well.

CONCLUSION:

It is all about diversity!  My favorite foods come from the wild, both plants and animals that lived freely wherever they were.  They ate clean, varied foods, and they taste amazing.  Consider the chicken as it once was:  A wild animal scrounging out an existence in this INCREDIBLY diverse world!  Now look around for something similar….I see geese flying, on absolutely incredible migrations.  I see ducks navigating thawing, raging rivers and flying through old growth forests… and there’s a chicken; eating layer mash.

Still Searching for the Wild Chickens of Montana,         Unknown-2

Dave

Posted in: Ask Dave