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Shetland - Goose
UsesTable bird, conservation grazing, agroforestry
OriginShetland Isles, Scotland
ColourGander: white, Goose: grey and white
Weight, gander6.4 kg
Weight, goose5.5 kg
A small but hardy breed used for a long time by crofters of the Shetland Isles to graze pastures. Shetlands were grazed on land prior to introducing sheep as they consumed the hosts of parasites like the Liver fluke which could otherwise cause problems for grazing livestock. Each goose can lay a clutch of up to 20 eggs per year. The Shetland is also an auto-sexing breed, the male goslings having a golden down and female goslings have a grey and golden down.
The carriage is held slightly above horizontal, the neck is medium length and the body is short, deep and cobby in appearance. The back is broad and a single lobed paunch exists between the legs.
Gander: Pure white plumage throughout.
Goose: The head is predominantly white with a little grey that extends partway down the neck. The back feathers are grey, breast and flanks are white with pale laced grey thigh coverts. The primary, secondary and tertiary wing feathers are white but the coverts and scapulars are grey with pale lacing. The tail is predominantly white with some central grey feathers.
Both sexes: Eyes are blue, beak, legs and feet are pink