So I've got about 70 acres of pasture in the back of my property that I've left neglected for about 8 years and let grow up with saplings. I was thinking of running goats with some cows. Problem is we have a LOT of coyotes around here and I am not sure the goats would survive. I've been reading a bit about.. yaks.
I know that bison will kill even larger trees by eating the bark around them and yaks are related to bison... are these the brush eating machines I'm looking for?
highlanders do a pretty good job at reclaiming and might be a worth a little more when it comes time to sell. i have no idea what a yak is worth or what it tastes like. so i cant tell you for sure. donkeys do a good job protecting livestock if you wanted to run one of them in the pasture
Please, no miniature donkeys as livestock guardians -- they'll end up as dinner and have been known to kill calves!
i never said a miniature donkey, i said a donkey. a good cut male or female will protect the livestock quite well. albeit not all of them will and you should have only one, if you have two they tend to associate with one another and not the herd. but you are right a miniature donkey would be a very bad idea.
Yaks are adapted to low temperatures and high altitudes and won't do well just anywhere.
Thanks for all the replys. There are two farms within a few hundred miles of me (kentucky) that raise them so I think they would do 'ok' at least. It would be an expensive experiment but after reading about them I might be inclined to give them a go. Zero vet bills / easy calving and docile bulls is pretty tempting.
That, and if nothing else it would give the neighbors something to talk about. Heck, they make yak saddles so the kids could ride them around :
Get a Highland, i have just one myself at the moment but i got her at 7 months old this april and she went thru my wild raspberrys, poison ivy, kudzu, paradise trees, burdocks, and dandelions before she even touched the grass! And your cals will be easier to sell than yaks
We have coyotes and coy dogs. Two miniature donkeys were adequate. They were the B, which are bigger, 350 to 400 pounds. Coyotes want lunch, not a fight. Dogs are really more of a problem. Coyotes are also reluctant to take on a cow. They are big and have horns.
__________________ Nothing is as strong as gentleness, nothing so gentle as real strength - St. Francis de Sales
Yeah you're probably right that cattle would be enough to take it back to pasture. About the hype around the yaks... I don't know guys we've had quite a bit of trouble with calves. My brother in law as well. Seems like we need to have a vet on standby for each birth. The yaks bred to cattle result in average 35-40lb calves from what I see online. These are half the weight of what we've seen with Angus and I can't imagine but that it is easier on the cows.
I will report back with either some amusing and educational disaster stories or positive experiences.
The 'docile bulls' claim comes from the fact that their species has a defined rut. I would wager that during rut, they would be as unpredictable as any other male animal. I can't imagine that they would be anything but miserable in most of the United States for 10 months out of the year. You also have to look out for Haldane's rule.
"Be polite, be professional, but have a plan to kill everybody you meet." -James Mattis