Our own geese

Kashmir Aenz is the first recognized domestic geese breed in India

Dr. Henna Hamadani
Srinagar, Publish Date: Feb 22 2018 11:10PM | Updated Date: Feb 22 2018 11:10PM
Our own geeseFile Photo

The domestic geese of Kashmir have now been recognized at national level due to efforts made by veterinary scientists of SKUAST-Kashmir, who conducted an exhaustive study on their characterization and documentation. The ‘Breed Registration Committee of Indian Council of Agricultural Research’ in its recently held meeting on breed registration approved the registration of local geese of Kashmir as a breed with the name ‘Kashmir Aenz’ and accession number ‘INDIA_GEESE_0700_ KASHMIR Aenz_18001’. The proposed name ‘Kashmir Aenz’ has been derived from two words, ‘Kashmir’ representing its breeding tract and ‘Aenz’ meaning ‘Geese’ in Kashmiri. With this accomplishment, ‘Kashmir Aenz’ became the first and the only recognized domestic geese breed in India, making SKUAST-K amongst the pioneer Institutes on geese research in the country.

Two Strains (or within breed types) of ‘Kashmir Aenz’ breed have also been identified; white coloured Kashmir Aenznamed as ‘Safed Aenz’ and a cinnamon (brownish) coloured Kashmir Aenznamed as ‘Katchur Aenz’. The terms ‘Safed’ and ‘Katchur’ are the Kashmiri words meaning ‘White’ and ‘Brownish or cinnamon coloured’ respectively. Goslings of ‘Kashmir Aenz’ also have two variants viz. yellow feathered and blackish yellow feathered. Yellow gosling appears to grow into ‘Safed Aenz’ and blackish yellow gosling into ‘Katchur Aenz’. 

Geese rearing in the Valley dates back to ancient time as has been mentioned by Sir Walter R. Lawrence in his book ‘The Valley of Kashmir’. Presently, Kashmir Aenzare being reared in and around the water bodies (lakes, wetlands and rivers) across the Valley, but are more abundant in districts of Srinagar, Bandipora, Ganderbal, Baramulla and Budgam. In Srinagar, Kashmir Aenzare reared in hamlets scattered around Dal Lake, Nigeen Lake and Anchar Lake. Shalbugh area, localities along the River Sind and Anchar Lake are the main Aenzrearing areas in Ganderbal district. In Bandipora district, Aenzare being reared in areas around the Wular Lake, mainly in Hajin, Sonawari and Laharwalpora. Geese rearing areas of Baramulla district include Pattan, Mirgund, Hygam, Nigli, Sangrama and Boniyar, and those of Budgam include locations around wetlands of Hokarsar and Narkara.

Katchur Aenz are predominantly being reared in Bandipora and Baramulla, whereas Safed Aenz are popular in Ganderbal. Mixed flocks comprising of both Katchur and Safed Aenz are seen in Srinagar and Budgam. The reason for such a distribution of plumage (feather) colour among these districts appear to be the preference of Bandipora’s and Baramulla’s farmers towards cinnamon plumage, and that of  Ganderbal’s farmers towards white plumage colour, and no preference of colour by the farmers in Srinagar. The reason for cinnamon colour preference among the farmers of Bandipora, who rear Kashmir Aenz mostly for the commercial purposes and leave their flocks out in the Wular lake for months together, appears to be their superstitious belief that cinnamon coloured Katchur Aenz are less prone to the evil eye and predation, since they camouflage more with the surroundings than the Safed Aenz with shiny white plumage. Unlike Bandipora, Kashmir Aenzrearers of Ganderbal show fondness towards the attractive white plumage since they mostly rear geese as pets. In Srinagar and Budgam district, farmers prefer no color in particular which may be because they keep geese just as a source of supplementary income in addition to their main occupation.

Three diverse systems of geese rearing are practiced by the farmers of Kashmir. Farmers with small flocks, keep geese confined to their backyards. The geese are confined to shelters during the night while they are let out during the day time. Farmers having medium sized flocks, leave their geese out in the nearby water bodies during the day time and during the night hours, geese are kept inside the shelters. And farmers, who have large flocks, leave their geese out in the water bodies for months together and bring them home at the time of laying or during floods and in winter months. 

Kashmir Aenz is reared for meat, eggs and as hobby in the Valley. Consumer acceptability and liking for Kashmir Aenz meat vis-à-vis chicken meat and mutton was ascertained in a study conducted at SKUAST-K by collecting responses from 70 Kashmiris, who consumed Kashmir Aenz meat. Appearance, texture, taste and overall acceptability of Kashmir Aenz meat was rated better than chicken meat by 72.41, 82.76, 82.76 and 75.86 % consumers respectively, and better than mutton by 68.97, 72.41, 89.66 and 82.76 % consumers respectively. All the consumers, covered under the study, confirmed no or negligible odour in the Kashmir Aenz meat.  A Kashmir Aenz egg weighs about 136.65 grams, which is nearly 2.06 times more than that of local duck egg, and 3.25 times more than that of desi chicken egg. The shell colour of their eggs is white with yolk colour ranging from yellow to orange. Their eggs are mostly kept for incubation since they lay fewer eggs in a year (around an average of 12 eggs). Hence excess eggs, if any, are sold for a handsome price being rare and large sized. In terms of taste, a Kashmir Aenz egg is similar to chicken egg and reportedly has no undesirable odour. 

 There are no established geese selling markets in villages, hence they are sold and purchased at the doorstep of the rearers. However, in Srinagar, geese are mainly sold in Batmaloo and Lal Chowk, by vendors, who purchase geese from rearers in villages and sell them live or slaughtered in the city. 

Geese farming requires meagre inputs in terms of feeding, housing and health care as these birds are hardy, resistant to common diseases of poultry and well adapted to free range foraging. If tapped properly, geese-farming is a promising sector capable of increasing the farmer’s income and at the same time meeting the rising demands for meat in the Valley to a great extent. 

 

(Dr. Henna Hamadani is Jr. Scientist, SKUAST-Kashmir)

 

Latest News

  1. Mansbal blast: Police doesn’t rule out use of explosive material
  2. Mansbal blast: Police doesn’t rule out use of explosive material
  1. Ceasefire ‘drama’ was made to achieve covert targets: Lashkar-e-Toiba
  2. Ceasefire ‘drama’ was made to achieve covert targets: Lashkar-e-Toiba
  1. Youth shot dead by unknown gunmen in Kulgam in south Kashmir
  2. Youth shot dead by unknown gunmen in Kulgam in south Kashmir
  1. Four civilians injured in mysterious blast at Manasbal park
  2. Four civilians injured in mysterious blast at Manasbal park
  1. No let up in oppression even on Eid day: Yasin Malik
  2. No let up in oppression even on Eid day: Yasin Malik
  1. Policeman injured in Kak Sarai attack continues to be critical
  2. Policeman injured in Kak Sarai attack continues to be critical
  1. Man returns from Dubai to celebrate Eid with family in Rajouri, found dead
  2. Man returns from Dubai to celebrate Eid with family in Rajouri, found dead
  1. 17 dead in Venezuela club stampede
  2. 17 dead in Venezuela club stampede
  1. GoI decides not to extend ceasefire in Kashmir
  2. GoI decides not to extend ceasefire in Kashmir
  1. Youth critically injured in last evening Soura clashes
  2. Youth critically injured in last evening Soura clashes
  1. US pips India as top greenfield FDI investment destination: Report
  2. US pips India as top greenfield FDI investment destination: Report
  1. Egypt raises fuel prices by up to 66.6% to push reforms
  2. Egypt raises fuel prices by up to 66.6% to push reforms
  1. JRL condemns killing of two youth in south Kashmir in past 24 hours
  2. JRL condemns killing of two youth in south Kashmir in past 24 hours
  1. Eid-ul-Fitr celebrated with religious fervour, gaiety across Jammu
  2. Eid-ul-Fitr celebrated with religious fervour, gaiety across Jammu
  1. Devender Rana exchanges greetings at Eidgahs, meets people
  2. Devender Rana exchanges greetings at Eidgahs, meets people
  1. Eid-ul-Fitr celebrated with religious fervor across Ramban
  2. Eid-ul-Fitr celebrated with religious fervor across Ramban
  1. Governor views arrangements for Mela Kheer Bhawani
  2. Governor views arrangements for Mela Kheer Bhawani
  1. Member Parliament Karan Singh meets Jammu and Kashmir Governor
  2. Member Parliament Karan Singh meets Jammu and Kashmir Governor
  1. Mushtaq ul Hassan, Abdul Aziz Lone of Tangmarg bereaved
  2. Mushtaq ul Hassan, Abdul Aziz Lone of Tangmarg bereaved
  1. Two persons shot at in Shopian, hospitalised
  2. Two persons shot at in Shopian, hospitalised
  1. Three women killed, five minors injured in Kishtwar landslide
  2. Three women killed, five minors injured in Kishtwar landslide
  1. CM Mehbooba visits Kreeri, offers condolences to Shujaat Bukhari’s family
  2. CM Mehbooba visits Kreeri, offers condolences to Shujaat Bukhari’s family
  1. Eid celebrated with religious fervor in Kashmir
  2. Eid celebrated with religious fervor in Kashmir
  1. Man killed, four injured after vehicle hired by locals for sightseeing turns turtle in Lolab
  2. Man killed, four injured after vehicle hired by locals for sightseeing turns turtle in Lolab
  1. Mehbooba Mufti offers Eid prayers at Sonwar, prays for peace
  2. Mehbooba Mufti offers Eid prayers at Sonwar, prays for peace
  1. Soldier killed in cross-LoC sniper fire in Rajouri
  2. Soldier killed in cross-LoC sniper fire in Rajouri
  1. Trooper injured after militants attack CRPF party in Srinagar
  2. Trooper injured after militants attack CRPF party in Srinagar
  1. Police refute news reports, claim Anantnag youth died in grenade explosion
  2. Police refute news reports, claim Anantnag youth died in grenade explosion
  1. Nine youth with pellet injuries to eyes brought to SMHS hospital from Anantnag
  2. Nine youth with pellet injuries to eyes brought to SMHS hospital from Anantnag
  1. SSA teachers call off protest after meeting CM Mehbooba Mufti
  2. SSA teachers call off protest after meeting CM Mehbooba Mufti
  1. Seven youth injured in Shopian clashes
  2. Seven youth injured in Shopian clashes
  1. Youth killed, 10 cops among 22 injured in Anantnag clashes
  2. Youth killed, 10 cops among 22 injured in Anantnag clashes
  1. Geelani barred from offering Eid prayers: Spokesman
  2. Geelani barred from offering Eid prayers: Spokesman
  1. SSA teachers stage sit-in at Pratap Park on Eid day to press for demands
  2. SSA teachers stage sit-in at Pratap Park on Eid day to press for demands
x
This site uses cookies to deliver our services and to show you relevant news and ads. By using our site, you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Cookie Policy, Privacy Policy, and our Terms of Service.That's Fine