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This breed of goose was developed in Haute Garonne, France, where the city of Toulouse is the region's center. They were first exported to England in the 1840s and America in the early 1850s. Though they fatten up well if you want a good roasted goose, their darker pin feathers do not produce as attractive a carcass as a white goose.
But the advantage of the darker feathers is the adult birds appear neater and cleaner than a white goose if it is muddy or late in the season. Specially-bred strains of Toulouse are still used in France for the production of goose foie gras, the force-fed liver that is revered by chefs world-wide for its smooth texture and taste.
Many people first think of Toulouse when geese are mentioned. They are fairly common, lay a good number of fertile eggs and are a sturdy, durable breed. They are one of the best breeds at hatching and raising their own young.
We got 2 female geese as guards after we lost a bunch of chickens and all previous ducks to hawk attacks. Tried the fishing line strung around their fence, but not convenient because of weekly moves, and the hawks figured it out. Since we got them, we only lost one chicken. Seen plenty of red tails flying over them, but they always stay well clear of the birds now, and the geese immediately alert. Eggs laying period is fairly short, but prolific during that time, and easy to sell individually.