Being In It for the Species The Kolbrin Bible Complete Danjeon Breathing System Home Study System

Author Topic: Goats, cows and other domestic animals  (Read 8077 times)

R.R. Book

  • Global Moderator
  • Prolific Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 5129
  • Karma: +19/-0
Re: Goats, cows and other domestic animals
« Reply #15 on: February 06, 2018, 02:45:39 PM »
Is kudzu the same thing as air potato?  If so, people in the north actually pay people from the south for rootstock that southerners are trying to get rid of.  It dies back here in winter, so isn't invasive. :)

ilinda

  • Global Moderator
  • Prolific Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2785
  • Karma: +32/-0
Re: Goats, cows and other domestic animals
« Reply #16 on: February 06, 2018, 07:16:51 PM »
Thanks for this little gem Socrates.  Very sweet looking animals.  She was right, they do look a little more like deer than most goat breeds.

Sounds as if they have a lot going for them: needing no help with birthing, good predator instincts, good mothering instincts, strong nursers, etc. 


Here are some drawbacks of goat-keeping from The Backyard Homestead, though it would be better if Ilinda weighed in:

*Bucks have a strong smell during rutting season

*Each dairy goat might typically eat 3/4 ton of hay per year, in addition to forage.

*They need strong fences, and even stronger if a rutting buck is kept.


Benefits:

*90 quarts of fresh milk per month per doe for 10 months out of the year (perhaps could freeze some for the non-lactating months)

*Besides having milk to drink, this means that you can make your own yogurt, cheese, ice cream and butter.

*Surplus milk can be fed to other livestock such as poultry.

*If raising Angoras for wool, expect 5-7# mohair twice annually

*If raising castrated bucks for meat, expect 25-40# meat per buck (but the film says the cost to purchase one animal of that breed is $400, so that's a pretty expensive source of meat)

*If raising Cashmere goats, expect <1# of down per year

*Expect does to birth at least one kid per year, and often twins

*Expect a pound of manure per goat per day, great for the garden.

*Goats can eat poison ivy safely
It's true about the buck's "bucky odor" during the season of rut.  However, it is actually quite tolerable because you do not have to house your goats near your house.  The reason for the smell is primarily that the buck will spray himself with his own urine, and he even seems to "drink" it as he sprays.  OMG, the stuff the buck does!  As long as there are doe goats nearby, whether visible, or just within smelling distance, the buck(s) will be preening, spraying, drooling and engaging in a variety of seemingly strange behaviors, including a kind of "stuttering" which is difficult to describe, and must be seen to be appreciated.  He does this when he is really close to a female and he wants to get closer.

And yes, the fences for goats must be "horse-high, pig-tight, and bull-strong" during the season of estrus or rut.  The bucks will be trying to break down the fences to get to the girls, and the girls (doe goats) will also be trying to destroy the fence to get to the bucks.  It works both ways.  But if the fence is fairly strong to begin with, they usually won't keep trying.  If they sense a lot of "give" in a fence, they know all it takes is more pushing and they're "in". 

Milk production depends mainly on two factors:  breed and feed.  Some breeds are more for milking such as Saanen and Nubian, whereas Boer are meat goats and have lots of muscle.  Feed is also key.  No matter how high quality the hay, you will need to feed the doe something on the milk stand (while she is being milked), and most people feed grain, which definitely ramps up milk production.  But a few downsides are that grain-fed animals produce milk and meat with an altered fatty acid profile (see movie King Corn), that is conducive to inflammation in the consumer.  Plus grain-fed herbivores often need to be fed sodium bicarbonate because the grain feeding alters the digestive tract in a negative way so that the animals can get "upset stomach", so most people who grain their animals keep bicarb. available to the goats just as they do salt and minerals.

But a person can avoid "graining" the animals and feed them only grasses, which includes peanut hay, garden produce, and about anything found in nature that they normally eat.  For example I gather several huge trash cans full of honey locust pods every year for the goats.  Also, save all my lima bean pods.  Plus peanut "hay" which is all the peanut tops, dried and cut into 3-4" sections.  On the milk stand, a grass-fed goat might get peanut hay, pods, pine branchlets, etc.--all the treats they love but don't get on a regular basis.

Nubians may have 1 kid in the first season, but in later years, she may have three, four or even five kids!  (If I had known this, I would have gotten alpacas or llamas, who reportedly usually only have one "cria").  It's easy to end up with too many goats and not enough space.

Many people will make cheese, and it is the whey that they feed to the chickens.  Friends of ours do that, but they said that you can only feed so much whey to the birds, as they can tire of it.

Last but not least, the sound of a crying baby goat is a very strong attractant to predators, which around here would include coyote, mountain lion, bobcat, feral tom cat, neighbor dogs, and wild hogs.  I don't know personally of anyone who has lost baby goats to wild hogs, they are known to eat fawns.  So it is in that first couple of months when the babies cries might attract predators, and this is the time for careful attention to weak spots in fencing, etc.

In addition to most green vegetation, including poison ivy, goats love your fruit and nut trees.  They will literally demolish a smaller tree by repeatedly eating the leaves, smaller branches, even standing on hind legs to get at higher and higher branches, until not much is left.  Fruit and nut trees must be double and triple fenced if they are to be safe from goats.  Even deer have destroyed young apple trees we planted.


R.R. Book

  • Global Moderator
  • Prolific Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 5129
  • Karma: +19/-0
Re: Goats, cows and other domestic animals
« Reply #17 on: February 07, 2018, 05:09:49 AM »
Ilinda and Soc, thank you so much for this discussion.  Our family has been debating about getting goats for a while now. 

Would a pygmy goat do as much damage to fruit trees?  I'd be happy with the reduced quantity of milk, though have read that they are more awkward to handle for milking.

Do the females require annual birthing in order to be freshened?  In other words, how important is it to have a buck around?

If you have a couple of does, can their freshening periods be staggered so that you always have milk?

ilinda

  • Global Moderator
  • Prolific Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2785
  • Karma: +32/-0
Re: Goats, cows and other domestic animals
« Reply #18 on: February 07, 2018, 06:31:37 PM »
Ilinda and Soc, thank you so much for this discussion.  Our family has been debating about getting goats for a while now. 

Would a pygmy goat do as much damage to fruit trees?  I'd be happy with the reduced quantity of milk, though have read that they are more awkward to handle for milking.

Do the females require annual birthing in order to be freshened?  In other words, how important is it to have a buck around?

If you have a couple of does, can their freshening periods be staggered so that you always have milk?
My best guess is that Pygmy goats would not be able to reach most of the branches of trees, and they can be fenced anyway, even if only single fence.

I had not heard that about the Pygmy being more awkward to handle in milking.  Maybe because they are smaller, and it would be easier for one to slip out of the milk stanchion.  Also, their teats are smaller and now I remember, someone with large hands may have trouble milking such small teats.

Yes, stagger the mating, and you will have staggered births.  Our friends do that, and have one doe ready to kid this month, and others later.

Long, long ago, probably before the I.R.,  maybe in the Middle Ages, before goats were being bred for multiple births, higher milk yield, and other traits, it is said that some breeds were already heavy milkers (British Alpine), and that one could milk all year long without re-freshening.

But now, it is my understanding that it only happens now in warmer climates where the animals can browse 12 months of the year.  We are waiting for "greenup" which is only a few weeks away, if this is going to be a normal year.  In the late fall or early winter the grass will finally turn brown, but it depends on how early the deep cold sets in.  Some years we still have green in December, and in others, the browning starts in November.  So, in temperate zones, it's very difficult to milk all year.  Another reason is that it is usually so cold standing up on the milk stand that the doe usually shivers when the outdoor temps drop. 

I did try to milk once, all year, but the yield was so low that it wasn't worth it.  I learned my lesson, gave up, and Paris the doe was happy.

If there is a buck available for mating with your doe goats in the fall, you won't need your own buck.  However, there are STD's that goats can carry and transmit.  Plus some viruses, not ordinarily called STD's can also be transmitted during breeding, and one is CAE, which IIRC causes arthritis.  If you have your own buck, you won't have to worry about what some other buck is carrying.  Plus if the mating does not "take", it will be much easier to redo it.  Otherwise, it would mean another trip, how many miles away, to the buck.  Lots of things to ponder.

R.R. Book

  • Global Moderator
  • Prolific Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 5129
  • Karma: +19/-0
Re: Goats, cows and other domestic animals
« Reply #19 on: February 07, 2018, 07:02:08 PM »
Ilinda, Thank you so much for the wealth of information!  :)

ilinda

  • Global Moderator
  • Prolific Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2785
  • Karma: +32/-0
Re: Goats, cows and other domestic animals
« Reply #20 on: February 08, 2018, 06:34:19 PM »
Another thing I forgot to mention is trimming the hooves.  A BTW here is that most vets consider goats useless animals, and around here they won't make farm calls like they do for cattle and horses.  On rare occasion we had one, but it's extremely rare.  I get the feeling vets think of goats as throw-away animals, not worth treating.  The organic farm where I bought our first goats told me then and now, that when you have goats you end up doing most of the doctoring on them yourself, so learn as much about health and disease as possible, because you'll need it.

We dreaded hoof trimming today, but our buck, Clyde, was long overdue and was beginning to appear slow and sickly--then we realized it was his hooves and not some dreaded internal problem.  He weighs over 300# but is rather easy to work with--just have lots of shredded carrots, and other favorites, and he will stand there nicely.

Not all goats tolerate this, and hoof trimming is another thing you need to learn unless you can take the goat to the vet.  It is even possible that some vets will come to your farm if it is CLOSE to the vet's office.  By placing rocks in the paths where the goats walk, such as perimeter of fence, they will be forced to walk on the rocks, which helps keep hooves trimmed.  But eventually they'll usually need a bit of help.

Just another tip, and if I think of more, will add here. 

R.R. Book

  • Global Moderator
  • Prolific Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 5129
  • Karma: +19/-0
Re: Goats, cows and other domestic animals
« Reply #21 on: February 08, 2018, 06:51:26 PM »
Thanks for the added info Ilinda.  We have an overabundance of rocks here, being on an outcropping...

It occurs to me that there is a farrier around the corner from us - maybe he could trim unshod hooves too?

Socrates

  • Global Moderator
  • Prolific Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 740
  • Karma: +13/-0
  • literally, I've seen the end in a vision; DEADLY!
    • TEOMCROTE
Re: Goats; trimming hooves
« Reply #22 on: February 09, 2018, 12:18:50 PM »
I'm wondering what kind of tool that takes...
survival database
location, civilisation reboot, PERMACULTURE, postcataclysmic soil, Growing Soil 1.01

Yowbarb

  • Administrator
  • Prolific Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 31955
  • Karma: +26/-0
  • Reaching For Survival
Re: Goats, cows and other domestic animals
« Reply #23 on: February 09, 2018, 02:27:54 PM »
Another thing I forgot to mention is trimming the hooves.  A BTW here is that most vets consider goats useless animals, and around here they won't make farm calls like they do for cattle and horses.  On rare occasion we had one, but it's extremely rare.  I get the feeling vets think of goats as throw-away animals, not worth treating.  The organic farm where I bought our first goats told me then and now, that when you have goats you end up doing most of the doctoring on them yourself, so learn as much about health and disease as possible, because you'll need it.

We dreaded hoof trimming today, but our buck, Clyde, was long overdue and was beginning to appear slow and sickly--then we realized it was his hooves and not some dreaded internal problem.  He weighs over 300# but is rather easy to work with--just have lots of shredded carrots, and other favorites, and he will stand there nicely.

Not all goats tolerate this, and hoof trimming is another thing you need to learn unless you can take the goat to the vet.  It is even possible that some vets will come to your farm if it is CLOSE to the vet's office.  By placing rocks in the paths where the goats walk, such as perimeter of fence, they will be forced to walk on the rocks, which helps keep hooves trimmed.  But eventually they'll usually need a bit of help.

Just another tip, and if I think of more, will add here.

Great info to have, thank you ilinda!

Yowbarb

  • Administrator
  • Prolific Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 31955
  • Karma: +26/-0
  • Reaching For Survival
Re: Goats, cows and other domestic animals
« Reply #24 on: February 09, 2018, 02:40:46 PM »
Is kudzu the same thing as air potato?  If so, people in the north actually pay people from the south for rootstock that southerners are trying to get rid of.  It dies back here in winter, so isn't invasive. :)

I had to google that. :) it looks like air potato is not the same as kudzu. Images: The Kudzu Cookbook
Kudzu leaves near Canton, Georgia
    also, Kuzumochi (葛餅), Japanese-style kudzu starch cake (Katori City, Japan)

http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/ag112  how to get rid of air potato, (Dioscorea bulbifera)

Here's a paragraph on kudzu:
The name kudzu describes one or more species in the genus Pueraria that are closely related, and some of them are considered to be varieties rather than full species. The morphological differences between them are subtle; they can breed with each other, and introduced kudzu populations in the United States apparently have ancestry from more than one of the species.] They are:

P. montana
P. edulis
P. phaseoloides
P. tuberosa

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kudzu
...


Yowbarb

  • Administrator
  • Prolific Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 31955
  • Karma: +26/-0
  • Reaching For Survival
Re: Goats, cows and other domestic animals
« Reply #25 on: February 09, 2018, 02:47:27 PM »
Is kudzu the same thing as air potato?  If so, people in the north actually pay people from the south for rootstock that southerners are trying to get rid of.  It dies back here in winter, so isn't invasive. :)

PS Goats feasting on kudzu. Sheep can eat it too... A Little Sheep Goes a Long Way in Managing Kudzu
www.news.gatech.edu/2014/11/06/little-sheep-goes-long-way-managing-kudzu


R.R. Book

  • Global Moderator
  • Prolific Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 5129
  • Karma: +19/-0
Re: Goats, cows and other domestic animals
« Reply #26 on: February 09, 2018, 05:17:07 PM »
You're right, it doesn't look the same.  Here's air potato, Dioscorea bulbifera, which is what Northerners buy from Southerners who are trying to eradicate it.  Too bad, because it's so nutritious and could really help bolster food security:



Here's how invasive it becomes in the South:



Here are the potatoes that it produces:


ilinda

  • Global Moderator
  • Prolific Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2785
  • Karma: +32/-0
Re: Goats, cows and other domestic animals
« Reply #27 on: February 09, 2018, 06:58:20 PM »
Thanks for the added info Ilinda.  We have an overabundance of rocks here, being on an outcropping...

It occurs to me that there is a farrier around the corner from us - maybe he could trim unshod hooves too?
Wouldn't hurt to ask him now befoe TSHTF.  Sounds promising.

ilinda

  • Global Moderator
  • Prolific Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2785
  • Karma: +32/-0
Re: Goats; trimming hooves
« Reply #28 on: February 09, 2018, 07:12:09 PM »
I'm wondering what kind of tool that takes...
If the goat owner is really on top of it, and trims hooves regularly, a couple of those hedge trimmers will work.  Not the giant "clippers" that require lots of arm strength to operate, but one of those little one-hand clippers, like you might use to trim roses.  They do eventually become dull, but it' a good start.

Important thing is make only tiny or small nips on the hoof at a time.  Do not think you can lop off an inch here or there, but the key is to just "nickel and dime" the hoof.  One real disadvantage of trying to cut a large hunk of hoof off at one time is that it's easier to draw blood.  That is what you want to avoid--remember blood pouring out, indicates there is a route of entry into the bloodstream for all the microorganisms that are clinging to the hoof and in the poop that is also clinging to the hoof.

Besides the clippers, a rasp or rasp-file.  Then there's a "pick-like thing" for prying out compacted poop in the hoof crevices.  And if you are lax like most people, or really busy and just cannot be totally prompt, it's a good idea to get one of the large "scur nippers".  It is used as the name implies, to help remove problematic scurs that may grow into an eye, etc.  But they also sometimes come in handy for hoof trimming.  We saw a vet use it on a hoof one time, but they are heavy and sort of unwieldy and I think you need a bit of practice to use them.

Also, livestock suppliers often sell a kit of a bunch of tools needed to hoof trimming.  That way you'll see an array of things that will all come in handy at one time or another.

When you're ready to trim hooves, besides laying out your tools, also have hydrogen peroxide and blood stopper of some kind--just in case.  Also, if there is hoof rot, there is a copper sulfate solution/dip that can be used sparingly--it's toxic, and must be measured out before use, as too much on the hoof can be absorbed and give a goat copper toxicity .  We have some but are very cautious about using it.

There may be something I'm forgetting, but think I've answered the question about tools.

R.R. Book

  • Global Moderator
  • Prolific Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 5129
  • Karma: +19/-0
Re: Goats, cows and other domestic animals
« Reply #29 on: February 10, 2018, 11:13:35 AM »
Quote
Then there's a "pick-like thing" for prying out compacted poop in the hoof crevices.

Do goats have frogs like equine?

 

Surviving the Planet X Tribulation: A Faith-Based Leadership Guide

Surviving the Planet X Tribulation: A Faith-Based Leadership Guide

This uplifting and entertaining guide is written to give you, the reader, confidence and hope through effective leadership techniques and survival community strategies designed for an extended tribulation. Learn more...

Advertise

Marshall's Motto

Destiny comes to those who listen, and fate finds the rest.

So learn what you can learn, do what you can do, and never give up hope!