29 December 2007

Goat Types and Popular Goat Breeds

The first step is choosing the right type of goat for your needs. Do you want a milk goat, a meat goat, a pet for the kids? There are many breeds available so make an educated decision and end up with a breed that suits your needs. Read up on the various types of goats available and their uses, as well as tolerances. Goats are not cheap to take care of, make sure they'll be useful!

Best Bets for Buying Goats
A few good places to purchase your goat are local 4H groups, a nearby goat ranch, or a recommended breeder (animals from these three sources are usually very well taken care of). When buying a goat from someone in this manner you are able to go to the home and observe the condition of the animal. Make sure they all look healthy and happy. Talk with the owner about any problems you should be aware of, current immunization records and the goat's medical history or genetics. Look the goat over with a fine tooth comb -- literally -- goat lice are very easy to spot and you don't want to infect your other animals at home. Lice are easy to get rid of but the medication can be costly, better to have the seller take care of any lice issues before you purchase! If you are buying an older goat make sure their bag sits well and has a healthy tone. Look for diseases - goats are prone to CAE (a joint disease). Most breeders or ranches are ethical enough not to sell a sick goat but again - buyer beware. If you are pretty confident in your choice of goat, go home and sleep on it for another day anyway, discussing the purchase with your family and weighing the pros and cons to adding a new animal to your herd.

Purchasing A Goat At Auction
It is never a great idea to purchase an animal you intend to keep (and not eat) at an auction. There is little time (if any) at an auction to assess the condition of the animal or to query the owner about breeding, quirks, or history. Often the owner is not even present.
You will also be more inclined at an auction to make a spontaneous purchase without the time to think things through. You might just pay a high price for your haste long after you've made the purchase.
Remember too, that the auction house is truly a miserable place for animals. They get frightened, 'shocky' (spooked), and some sellers will do whatever is necessary just to ensure the highest sale price of the animal. Once you get the animal home, they can be a different creature all together. (Compare this process to a car salesman adding a gas additive to a lemon right before the test drive!)
I am in no way implying all sellers at auctions are unethical, there are some very reputable sellers at auction, but the situation can be high risk - buyer beware. If I've managed to scare you off auctions altogether I apologize, I have bought some good animals at the auction house in the past.

Preparing for the New Arrival
Before bringing your new goat home, make sure you are well prepared. No construction should go on around them while they adjust to their new surroundings.
Building a large enough pen at the start is easier than going back and making it larger later when you add more goats to the barn. Build a pen that is large enough to house the eventual number of animals you intend to raise. When building the pen, the main objective is sturdiness and security - keeping predators out, and your goats in! Main considerations are a roof that will not leak and insulation if you live in a cold climate. Bed down the new home with fresh, clean grass, hay or straw.

Moving A Goat
If you have a pickup truck, borrow a truck cap for the back or build a sturdy wooden box tied securely to the body of the truck. You'll want to make the trip home as comfortable and stress free as possible for your new friend. Baby or pygmy goats can be driven to the new location inside the vehicle, on a friend's lap, for short trips. If you can't move your new goat without stress, ask the seller if s/he can deliver the animal to your home.

Breeding Goats
Breeding your doe is always an adventure. There are a few ways to go about this...the most preferable being to hire a stud. This way you are only caring for and feeding an odiferous buck for a few weeks -- as opposed to feeding and caring for a vivacious buck year round. (Bucks should be kept separate from milk does except for the breeding season.)
Our young billy (Rambo) played nicely with my children and seemed gentle.

Conclusion to Raising Goats
If, like us, you happen to fall in love with a young buck, you will need to build separate quarters and a pen from your does. Ensure the buck you buy has good genetics that you'll want passed down to your future herd. Further, if you must keep a buck, you'll be able to make some money back for his keep by renting him out as stud (if he is in fact a genetically sound animal).
For more detailed information on Raising and Caring for Goats, be sure to check out

Goats: Milk, Meat & Mohair .

28 December 2007

Are you interested in breeding goats ???

Goat are easy animals for almost anyone to raise. They require little time to maintain and take care of. They are fun to raise and are also very profitable.
Goats are the oldest domesticated livestock. Ancient burial sites in Asia contain the mummified remains of goats. Why? Goats not only provide the things necessary to Man's survival... meat, milk, hides, fiber and companionship, but also those things necessary in the afterlife. Believe it or not, goats helped Man discover coffee. Undigested coffee beans concealed within goat droppings must have gotten thrown on the fire and the rest is Starbucks History.

- Australian Boer Goat
The Boer Goat originated in South Africa in the early 1900's when some farmers began selecting their goats for meat qualities. It is the only goat breed that has been specifically bred for meat and is recognized as the World's premiere meat goat.
Boer Goat genetics were imported into Australia in the late 1980's and were released from Quarantine in the mid 90's. Since this time the popularity of the Boer goat has gone from strength to strength with numbers rapidly increasing.
Boer goat bucks are being used to crossbreed with Australian bush does producing a much faster growing carcase, which reaches slaughter weight in significantly faster time and has a higher dressing out percentage. The Boer goat has also performed extremely well in trials and carcase competitions proving it to be the superior meat goat breed.

A Boer is a large, double muscled animal . They can consistently produce more muscling in less time than any other breed of goat, and will pass this capability to their kids. Boers are easy to raise, have mild temperaments, are affectionate, require no milking, no special care, no shearing, and no fancy fences. Boers and Boer crosses also have huge rumen capacity. The Boer goats were developed to clear land that was too difficult to be cleared by humans. They spend a lot more time grazing than other types of goats do. One reason for this, is that they are out grazing in the heat of the day when dairy goats are wilting in the shade. They are also out grazing when the snow is blowing across the pasture...."

Kalahari Red's
Are a distinct and separate breed of Goat (as verified by DNA testing for SA Stud Book). They are not related to the Boer Goat (don't believe anyone that tells you so) and have additional advantages to the original boer goat breed - they can enhance the tenderness of the meat, the hardiness of the animal and the camouflage and hence the survival of their kids.
Their excellent mobility allows them to walk far in search of food and water. They feed on a vast variety of plants and are resistant to disease and parasites. Kalahari Reds are less susceptible to diseases and need to be inoculated and dosed far less than other breeds, which makes them easy to care for and less labour intensive. The limited use of vaccines makes the production of organically produced meat possible. A further bonus is lean meat with an excellent taste and texture. COLOURKalahari Reds can be used to give indigenous goats a uniform, solid red colour, with all the unique advantages that this brings. Their earthy colour provides a good camouflage that protects them from predators. White kids would be seen easily by foxes, pigs and eagles. They are fully pigmented and, therefore, able to endure heat and strong sunshine. Their dark coats and long ears provide good heat resistance and will, therefore, feed for longer during the heat of the day, which ultimately means higher weight gains.
SIZEThe commercial goat farmer can cross-breed Kalahari Reds to improve the carcass mass of indigenous goats. This means more meat per hectare.
They are tall and long, which gives them excellent mobility. As they are taller than most other goats they can take advantage of more feed. Their carcass size is similar to the SA Boer goat. The average weight of a buck is as much as 115kg, while does reach 75kg. Kids grow fast. In Australia, young kids show weight gains of 1.5kg per week, with some even exceeding 400g per day.

The Toggenburg
A Swiss dairy goat from Toggenburg Valley of Switzerland at Obertoggenburg. They are also credited as being the oldest known dairy goat breed.
This breed is medium size, sturdy, vigorous, and alert in appearance. Slightly smaller than the other Alpine breeds, the does weight at least 120lb/55kg.
The hair is short or medium in length, soft, fine, and lying flat. Its color is solid varying from light fawn to dark chocolate with no preference for any shade. Distinct white markings are as follows: white ears with dark spot in middle; two white stripes down the face from above each eye to the muzzle; hind legs white from hocks to hooves; forelegs white from knees downward with a dark lien (band) below knee acceptable; a white triangle on either side of the tail; white spot may be present at root of wattles or in that area if no wattles are present. Varying degrees of cream markings instead of pure white acceptable, but not desirable. The ears are erect and carried forward. Facial lines may be dished or straight, never roman.
Toggenburgs perform best in cooler conditions. They are noted for their excellent udder development and high milk production, and have an average fat test of 3.7 percent.

- The Saanen
A dairy goat originated in Switzerland, in the Saanen Valley. Saanen does are heavy milk producers and usually yield 3-4 percent milk fat. It is medium to large in size (weighing approximately 145 lbs/65kg) with rugged bone and plenty of vigor.
Does should be feminine, and not coarse. Saanens are white or light cream in color, with white preferred. Spots on the skin are not discriminated against. Small spots of color on the hair are allowable, but not desirable. The hair should be short and fine, although a fringe over the spine and thighs is often present. Ears should be erect and alertly carried, preferably pointing forward. The face should be straight or dished. A tendency toward a roman nose is discriminated against.
The breed is sensitive to excessive sunlight and performs best in cooler conditions. The provision of shade is essential and tan skin is preferable.

- The Angora
Angora goat originated in the district of Angora in Asia Minor. The Angora dates back prior to early biblical history. Mention is made of the use of mohair at the time of Moses, which would fix the record of the Angora some time between 1571 and 1451 B.C., according to the Angora Goat Mohair Industry publication from USDA (Miscellaneous Bulletin 50, 1929). Mohair became a valuable product in commerce early in the nineteenth century. In order to increase the supply of mohair available for export to the European countries, the Turks crossed the Angora goat with common stock to increase the poundage of salable hair. Probably there was no effort to keep the original Angora separate, and the general increase in size and vigor of the goats in the Angora area was, no doubt, partially the result of this infusion of other blood.
Angora stock was distributed to different countries, and a pair of Angoras was imported to Europe by Charles V about 1554. In 1765 an importation was made by the Spanish government and twenty years later a considerable number were imported into France. None of these importations were successful in establishing mohair production. On the other hand, Angoras were taken to South Africa in 1838, and from this importation and later importations mohair production was established in that country. The Union of South Africa is one of the three leading mohair-producing sections in the world and is exceeded in production only by the United States and Turkey.

The appropriately named Kiko goat was purpose-bred in New Zealand for meat production – the Maori word “kiko” meaning flesh or meat. The developers of the breed were Garrick and Anne Batten of Nelson in the northern South Island, and they developed the Kiko from feral goats that had been liberated or had escaped over the last hundred years or so of European settlement. These feral goats could be found in many places throughout the country, and although they were hardy, they were relatively small and produced little meat or milk.
The Kiko breed was established by crossbreeding selected feral does with Anglo-Nubian, Toggenburg and Saanen bucks, with further cross-breeding in the second and third generations. After four generations of selective breeding – selection being on the grounds of survivability and growth rate in a hill country environment – a dramatic improvement in liveweight and animal performance was achieved. By 1986 the Kiko breed was established and the herd was closed to further cross-breeding.
Within New Zealand, control of the breed has remained with the original developers. However, Kikos were exported to the United States in the 1990s, and there are now a number of enthusiastic breeders of Kikos in that country.

- Feral goat
The populations started with the abandonment of goat flocks in unprofitable or drought times and through the gradual build-up of escapees from shepherded goat flocks. Over the years feral herds have developed and multiplied in areas which have offered some natural defense against predators. These goats have effectively adjusted to the environment to the degree that there is no longer any strong resemblance to the original breeds.
Research indicates that these animals possess strong fiber and milk producing qualities. When domesticated and carefully selected, they provide an excellent base for the development of cashmere, mohair, leather and meat production programs. This domesticated animal is now being referred to as the Australian goat. An increasing number of producers are running them in conjunction with sheep, as a means of controlling weed and scrub growth.
These enterprises can now provide significant numbers of goats that are even in age, size and weight. Does from these flocks are suitable for breeding Cashmeres, cross-breeding with Angoras for fiber production and as recipients in fertilized ovum transplant programs.
Entrepreneurs are also utilizing the Australian goat for the overseas export of meat and skin.

- Janapari
Jamnapari is originated from the frontier of India and Pakistan, it has been imported from India to Indonesia since 1953. After years of breeding, Jamnapari has become the highest quality breed in Indonesia.

Jamnapari is famous for its large and graceful body. It has long ears and thick fur on rumps. Male Jamnapari is weighted up to 120 kg while the female is up to 90 kg. Though they are large in size, they are mild in nature. They like idling around the barn, looking for water and food.

26 December 2007

Malaysian Underpinning Live Goat Exports

Live goat exports for the first nine months of 2007 totalled 62,331 head – up 103% year-on-year and the highest since 2002 (Australian Bureau of Statistics). Record numbers to Malaysia have underpinned shipments this year.
Strong demand for Australian goats from Malaysia has provided the impetus for the increased shipments during 2007. Exports to Malaysia for the first nine months of 2007 stood at a record 47,497 head, with very large shipments recorded during May (7,642 head), August (9,859 head) and September (6,663 head).
With another three months of shipments still remaining for the year, 2007 should see a new calendar year record set, surpassing the 52,755 head recorded in 2002. While Malaysia has dominated exports during 2007, taking 74% of total shipments, numbers to other markets have been inconsistent.
Indonesia remains the second largest destination for Australian goats in 2007, with 5,928 head, despite only taking shipments in May and June. Significant shipments throughout 2007 have also been sent to Thailand (2,300 head), Oman (1,874 head), Singapore (1,192 head), New Zealand (1,144 head) and Brunei (1,000 head).
The largest number of goats exported live during 2007 have been sourced from NSW (21,959 head), followed by SA (14,703 head), Queensland (9,515 head) and WA (9,219 head )

25 December 2007

PM (Pak Lah) recalls Goat-Rearing Days

The Malaysian Agriculture Research and Development Institute has identified the Boer goat as a suitable breed for local production due to its fast growth rate. Abdullah said agriculture had much potential but in developing the sector as the third pillar of the economy – after manufacturing and tourism – the Government faced an uphill battle in getting the people to see it as a potential money earner. He said this was because many of those who had been involved in small-scale agriculture remained poor and most of their children preferred to do something else. “If they only knew the potential of this sector – now that our agro-based industry is going through rapid development – they would have persevered,” he said. Even then, he added, farmers and others in the agriculture sector needed to change their approach by applying new technologies to ensure optimum use of their land. “If they want to continue the way that their forefathers had worked on their land, then do not bother. There is no future for them,” he said.

Credit to the Star: Sunday, April 09, 2006

24 December 2007

Boer Goat Breed Standard

The following is an article published in Boer Goat Breeders Association of Australia (BGBAA)) for our info. Hope this will open up our mind and therefore we will learn something on how to produce high quality Malaysian Boer to be identical or at least not to have huge gap with Aussie's level. Note that although kambing Boer was previously discovered in South Africa in 1900's, they were only imported to Aussie in late 1980's…. See how they managed to developed their high quality product within approximately 20 years. ...credit to (BGBAA)

This standard is a guide to breeders and sets down guidelines to encourage the breeding of an improved Boer Goat with increased economic value to commercial goat meat producers. When evaluating Boer goats, productive traits such as conformation, mobility and good structure should always receive priority over aesthetic traits. See this for your easy reference.

A strong, broad head showing character and a quiet disposition. Large brown almond shaped hooded eyes. A strong curved roman nose with flared and wide nostrils with the tip of the nose in line with the lower lip and chin. A strong curved lower jaw rising to meet the upper jaw is ideal. Up to six tooth must show a 100% fit and at 8 tooth may show 6mm protrusion. Permanent teeth must cut in the correct anatomical place. A prominently curved forehead linking up with the curve of nose and horns. Horns should be strong, round, solid and show colour, be of moderate length and placed moderately apart with a gradual backward curve. Ears should be long, broad, smooth, set in line with the eye and hang downwards from the head.

Characteristic Faults:
Concave forehead, straight, flat or wild horns, pointed jaws, ears folded (lengthwise), stiff protruding ears, short ears, overshot or undershot jaw.

A neck of moderate length in proportion to the length of the body. In does, the neck should come out deep from the chest blending smoothly with the shoulders, be wide in its attachment and rising gracefully to the throatlatch which shows refinement in the female. In males, the neck should be thicker and show skin folds as a sign of masculinity. The chest should be broad with a deep brisket. The shoulder should be well muscled, in proportion to the body and be well fitted to the withers. The withers should be broad and well-fitted (not sharp).

Characteristic Faults:
Very long, thin, or short neck or too loose shoulders.

The Barrel should be long, broad and deep. The ribs must be well sprung and the loins well muscled. The goat should have a broad, fairly straight back and must not be pinched behind the shoulders. A small dip behind the shoulders is acceptable.

Characteristic Faults:
Concave back, slab-sided, cylindrical or pinched behind the shoulder.

The pelvis must be large broad and deep with good length from hip to pin. Well muscled through the rump twist and inner thighs with length through the stitch particularly in bucks. The rump should be slightly sloped. The tail should be straight at the dock and be able to move freely.
Characteristic Faults:
Narrow hips or thurl, rump that slopes too much, wry tail, short from hip to pin, poor muscling particularly in males, short stitch/poor inner thigh development.

The legs should be of medium length and in proportion to the depth of the body. The upper leg should be long in proportion to the cannon bone and well muscled. The legs should be strong and well placed with strong pastern and well formed, coloured hooves. Leg bone should be wide, flat and dry.

Characteristic Faults:
Knock knees, bandy legs, cow or sickle hocks, post legged. Thin or fleshy legs. Weak pasterns and hooves pointing outwards or inwards or too light in colour.

A loose supple skin is essential. Eyelids and hairless parts must be pigmented. All hairless skin (eg. under the tail, round the eyelids and mouth) should have a minimum of 75% pigmentation. Pigmentation may range from light through to dark. Hair should be short, dense and glossy. A limited amount of cashmere will be tolerated during winter months.

Characteristic Faults:
Covering too long and coarse or sparse, fine and open. Pigmentation less than 75%.

Does: Well-formed udder firmly attached with no more than two separate teats on a side.
Bucks: Two reasonably large, well-formed, healthy and equal sized testes in one scrotum. A scrotum with no larger split than 5cm is permissible. The scrotum must be at least 25cm in circumference at maturity.

Characteristic Faults:
Any teat variation of more than two separate teats per side, calabash/bottle teats or pendulous udder. Small testes; a scrotum with more than a 5cm split; scrotal sack with a circumference of less than 25cm at maturity.

The ideal is a medium sized, heavy goat with maximum meat production. A desirable relationship between length of leg and depth of body should be achieved. Kids tend to be longer in the leg.

Characteristic Faults:
Goats too large or too small (pony type)

The Boer goat is a white goat with a fully pigmented red head and white blaze. A full red head is permissible. Uniform shading between light and dark is permissible. The minimum requirement for a stud animal is a red patch of at least 10cm in diameter on both sides of the head, ears excluded. Both ears should have at least 75% red colouring and 75% pigmentation.
The following is permissible:
Head, Neck and Forequarters: A total red colouring is permissible not further than the shoulder blade and on the shoulder not lower than the chest junction.

Barrel, Hindquarters and Belly: Only one patch not exceeding 10cm in diameter is permissible.
Legs: The term ‘legs’ is taken to mean that portion below an imaginary line formed by the chest and the underline. One patch or a number of patches that do not exceed a total area of 5cm in diameter.

Tail: The tail may be red, but the red colour may not continue onto the body for more than 2.5cm.

Red Hair and Covering: Very few red hairs in the white of the coat is permissible from the age of two tooth.

The ennobled Boer Goat is an animal of quality with balance and symmetry and a strong, vigorous appearance. The doe must be feminine, wedging slightly to the front. The buck demonstrates masculinity and is heavier in the head, neck, forequarters and rump.

A doe must have kidded by 2 years of age.

Animals that display any of the following disqualification should not be used for breeding and may not be exhibited:
• Blue eyes.
• Wry, twisted or crooked face or mouth. Parrot mouth.
• Undescended, single or divided testes, monorchid or cryptorchid

Where an animal is highly exceptional in its functional traits and displays an aesthetic fault its exceptional traits should be recognized.

23 December 2007

Why lots of people like to eat goat meat ???

Many people ask what is so special about goat meat. Many choose goat meat as it has no religious restrictions like pork. Unlike lamb it has far less fat and many prefer the flavours of goat over beef and sheep meats. The actual molecular structure of goat meat is different and as a result goat meat is more easily digested. The one big advantage is that it is very low fat and very low cholesterol which is ideal for the health conscious person. They make the best Indian style curry there is, and roasted is simply divine.

Based on the test done by USDA,

3oz roasted goat meat contains:

122 calorie, 2.58g fat, 0.79g saturated fat, 23g protein and 3.2mg iron.

3oz roasted beef contains:

245 calorie, 16g fat, 6.8g saturated fat, 23g protein dan 2.9mg iron.

3oz roasted pork contains:

310 calorie, 24 g fat, 8.7 g saturated fat, 21g protein dan 2.7mg iron.

3oz roasted lamb contains:

235 calorie, 16g fat, 7.3 g saturated fat, 22g protein dan 1.4mg iron.

3oz roasted chicken contains:

120 kalori, 3.5 g fat, 1.1g saturated fat, 21g protein dan 1.5mg iron.

It is not a surprise that many people choose to consume goat meat over any other meat and it is our responsibility to educate the society the benefits of consuming goat meat. Healthy meat for healthy body.


1. USDA Handbook #8, 1989
2. Nutritive value of foods, home and garden bulletin number 72,
USDA, Washington, D.C., US Government Printing Office, 1981

What is a Boer goat and why breed Boer goats?

Why are Meat Goats the fastest growing livestock industry in the world?
- "The demand for `chevon', or `cabrito', or `goat meat' in the United States is so high that producers can't keep up. Because of this vacuum, much of the goat meat sold in the United States is imported from New Zealand or Australia. About 1.5 million pounds of goat meat is imported every week. And demand just keeps growing.

What is so special about chevon (goat meat)? Many people have digestive problems that require a careful diet. The molecular structure of chevon is different than that of other meats. Therefore, chevon digests more easily. It is also a low fat, good tasting alternative to chicken or fish. I am one of those people who have to watch what they eat. I can eat chicken, some kinds of fish, turkey and chevon. I prefer chevon from an animal that is at least 75% Boer. The Boer influence changes the taste of the meat to a milder, more veal-like flavor.

Boer goats are large framed animals resembling, in many ways, the Nubian goat. The most striking difference between a Boer goat and any other type of goat you may have seen, is the size. A Boer is a large, double muscled animal developed in Southern Africa specifically for meat and hardiness. They can consistently produce more muscling in less time than any other breed of goat, and will pass this capability to their kids. Boers are easy to raise, have mild temperaments, are affectionate, require no milking, no special care, no shearing, and no fancy fences. Boers and Boer crosses also have huge rumen capacity. The Boer goats were developed to clear land that was too difficult to be cleared by humans. They spend a lot more time grazing than other types of goats do.

The above is an excerpt from the article "Why Raise Meat Goats?" by Gail Bowman. You can find the rest of the article at http://www.boergoatshome.com/

What is a Boer goat and why breed Boer goats?

-What is a Boer goat?
The Boer goat was developed in South Africa as a breed meant solely for meat production. The term "Boer" refers to the descendants of the Dutch immigrants, or Boers, most of them farmers, who settled the country; thus, "Boer" goat simply means "farmer's" goat. Because of the intense selective breeding over the past 50 years or more by South African goat breeders, the Boer goat is considered far superior to any other goat for meat production. It is known for rapid weight gain and heavy muscling and has high fertility. Boer does typically give birth to twins.

-What's a Boer goat good for?
That because the Boer was selectively improved for its meat production ability and its ability to pass on that trait to its offspring, along with other traits including pasture hardiness, the addition of a Boer buck to a commercial meat goat herd can improve the meat characteristics of the offspring without making them too "soft" to be pasture goats.

-What do Boer goats cost in Malaysia?
A fullblood Boer goat will cost around RM2500-3000 per head while F1 Boer goat will coast around RM700-1200 per head.The price will depend very much on the size, age and quality of the goat.

-Do I need Boer influence in my herd to be a successful meat goat producer?
Nope. Not at all. Right now you could probably do well raising and selling meat goats (providing demand holds at present levels and imports don't absolutely flood the country) even if you raised wild, skinny, tough, unimproved meat goats. But as the industry develops and grows, you'll probably want to add at least a Boer buck to your flock to compete with the meaty animals sure to hit the market in the near future.