Pondering Over Adding Goats to Your Farm?


| 3/14/2018 9:24:00 AM


Tags: goat keeping, Pygmy, Oberhasli, Carrie Miller, Ohio, Miller Micro Farm,

Fun with Goats  

Introduction

Whether looking for a pet, companion animal, dairy producer, fiber provider, or even meat they are a fantastic livestock choice. They demonstrate a natural ability to calm our souls, nourish our bodies, and make us laugh like no other. Do you require a friend that will always be there and show excitement to see you? Want snuggles on demand? Goats may just be for you. Always found by your side to help with any projects, whether you need the help or not. Inquisitive by nature goats are always finding new adventure to be part of. They are highly intelligent, sweet natured, and easy to manage compared to other livestock species. Their gentle dispositions make them an ideal choice for 4-H kids.

Manger and Lucy

Goats have a short return on investment compared to other livestock. They are only pregnant for five months at a time. In most cases they will have multiples twins, triplets, and even quads are a normality amongst some breeds. Because of their feed choices consisting of mainly weeds a fancy pasture is unneeded. Other livestock find a goat’s choice of delicacies unfit for them, allowing certain species to overtake pastures. Goats make amazing pasture cleaners primarily munching upon poison ivy, wild roses, thorny black berry bushes, even thistles leaving the other choice grass to the horses and cows. Their split lips and small mouths allow them to eat the yummy leaves even from the thorniest of plants. Grasses and weeds should make up ninety to hundred percent of a goat’s diet, expensive grains are not needed. In the winter, they prefer a nice mix of alfalfa, timothy, and pasture mix hay.

There are endless ways to use goat products. Like cows’ goats come in meat breeds and dairy breeds. The Boar goat is the most popular among meat producers. Alpine, Lamancha, Saanen, and Oberhasli are just a few of the dairy breeds available. A few breeds like the Nubian are considered dual-purpose breeds. From simply drinking their sweet milk, to yogurt, ice-cream, butter, cheese, and even sour cream. Let’s not forget about all the other products you can make soap, lotion, salves, and even hair products. The meat is largely consumed by other countries, it is the most widely consumed red meat in the world. It has been slowly gaining popularity among consumers in the United States. Let’s not forget about the possibilities of Angora and Cashmere breeds. Their world-renowned for producing fine wool and mohair, commonly used in making some of the softest fabrics in the known.

Coco and Lucy Playing

Rene' Keegans
3/23/2018 4:44:50 PM

I adore every one of my pet, nine, named, sweet and adorable goats! I've only had them for just under 10 years since moving to the rural setting, but have had as many as 17 at one time, but husband says no more bucks, so no more kidding these past three years.....I have a concern with my Cookie Doe. She's had a darkish and foul-smelling nasal discharge for three mos. now. She's the only one, and this is the first time for any to have this. I've not been able to find anything online to address this. It worries me and I know it distresses her, and the others sometimes alienate her due to it. If anyone has had this issue with their goat, I really need to know what to do for her. Thank you! Rene'


cmiller
3/21/2018 10:05:48 AM

Ben, we use 4ft woven wire or livestock fence. Maninly beacause we are trying to keep the chickens in the pasture as well. I know a lot of people use electric fencing. We have had no problem with our goats getting out of the pasture.


cmiller
3/21/2018 10:05:46 AM

Cjwarhawk Yes, I have about 100 chickens all heritage breeds. My favorite breeds are Brahmas, Orpington, Australorp, Polish, Silkies, Barred rock, and Black Marans. I tried ducks last year, not my thing. We also raise meat chickens and turkeys are being added this year. Goats are my favorite animal we have here on the farm. They are pure entertainment.





mother earth news fair 2018 schedule

MOTHER EARTH NEWS FAIR

Next: April 28-29, 2018
Asheville, NC

Whether you want to learn how to grow and raise your own food, build your own root cellar, or create a green dream home, come out and learn everything you need to know — and then some!

LEARN MORE