Goats and Chickens???

Discussion in 'Goats' started by Wannabee, Mar 26, 2006.

  1. Wannabee

    Wannabee Foggy Dew Farms

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    One other goat question before I make the plunge - Can I run my chickens in the same pen as the goats, or will goats hurt the chickens???

    Thanks again!
     
  2. rhjacobi

    rhjacobi Well-Known Member

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    Hi Wannabee,

    If no one else responds, goatmom would be a good resource for this too. I believe that she runs her goats with her chickens. The only thing is that chicken feed can be harmful to goats so you need to be able to keep the feed away from the goats.

    Bob
    Lynchburg, TN.

     

  3. witchysharon

    witchysharon Well-Known Member

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    Depends on the size of the 'pen' I would think. Goats won't usually 'hurt' the chickens on purpose, but if they are playing/butting etc. they aren't looking where they are going and 'could' step on a chicken.

    Mine are free range chickens with the goats and we have 22 acres. Even then, two of the roosters limp because they got in the way of excited and running goats, couldn't get out of the way in time and a foot got stepped on.

    Normally my goats are pretty careful when they know the chickens are around though. I have seen them stand stock still while the chickens eat bugs or scratch right beneath them. They don't budge until the chickens are out of the way. But...accidents can happen more readily in close quarters.

    and yes, there is the problem of feeding. They should be fed food formulated for the species. Goats shouldn't be eating chicken feed, especially if it is laying mash because there is a lot of calcium in it.
     
  4. Meg Z

    Meg Z winding down

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    Goats will step on chicks, if they don't get out of the way, but I don't have any problems with grown chickens and goats.

    However, you'll need to make sure the chickens can't foul the goat's water, feed, minerals, baking soda, or hay. Chicken poo in any of those is not good.

    It would probably also depend on how much space they have. Mine is pasture, and everyone has separate sleeping quarters and feeding areas.

    Meg
     
  5. Dee

    Dee Well-Known Member

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    I have one chicken left and she will peck at a goat if she is eating their grain and its face gets too close. :duel:
     
  6. wardarden

    wardarden Well-Known Member

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    Our goats have their own area but it is made with cattle panels and the hens just walk right through the 4" squares. I get the biggest laugh out of my 3 month old doeling. She gets so excited with the hens sometimes that she jumps straight up in the air and does a 180. She likes to chase them around too. Never had any harm done to them though. I have a hen that likes to get in their hay rack and lay an egg but I've never seen any chicken poo in there. That would be the thing that would concern me. The hens go through the goat poo and eat out the undigested corn or grain. Not too fun to watch but oh well. I would think the chickens may help keep down the parasite population, maybe?
     
  7. ozark_jewels

    ozark_jewels Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I have just one thing to say and that is that running them together is a PAIN. Chickens roost in the rafters and crap on the goats backs. I spread fresh straw in the winter...the chickens turn it over and dig through everything, bring up the crappy straw underneath. Chickens lay eggs and crap in the hay feeders. Goats try to eat chicken grain, chickens eat all the kids grain. Chickens get into EVERYTHING. So, if you are just wanting a few pets....it may not be a bad situation. Trying to run a bigger operation....its a PAIN. Chickens leave tomorrow. :happy: :happy: :happy:
     
  8. T Lynn

    T Lynn Well-Known Member

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    I agree about chickens being a pain. Mine not only eat the goat feed but poop everywhere! And they took up sleeping on the back porch which means poo there also. Needless to say ours are now in a coop, they are not very happy about it, but they will adjust. They do eat all the bugs off the place though so once they get use to sleeping in the coop then I will let them out every once in awhile for a snack!!
     
  9. flannelberry

    flannelberry Pure mischief

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    Thanks for this thread. I'm going to run my two pygmies with my ducks and this is helpful info - especially about the feed.

    The ducks will be ranging during the day so they'll have a limited amount of time together and the goats will have their own night quarters.
    So, would people recommend a seperate run for the ducks feed? I could have one that they could get in and out but the goats couldn't...

    FYI - the tall cat litter pails make great waterers. I don't like having the water in plastic but it's worked the best of anything we've tried. They're too tall for the ducks to get in and they hold and lot of water - and the ducks can dunk their heads fully. We get them free from a neighbour, give them a really thorough cleaning and fill 'em up.
     
  10. Wingdo

    Wingdo Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I have been running goats and chickens together for the past six years and have yet to have any problems. The best way to keep the birds from crapping on everything is have them learn to roost in their own little area. This is done by raising the birds in this "one" section (with plenty of roosting poles), which they will return to every night... even when they get old enough to fly/squeeze in and out of the sectioned off area.

    As for the feed; it is secured in the chicken area where only the birds can get to it, and the goats eat what I feed twice a day. The goats do push the birds around with their noses (when they try to steal their feed), but that's about all I've seen them do.

    The birds also do me, and the goats, a great service by keeping down pests, both on them and in the goathouse areas as well. I almost got shed of most of my the birds last year but when I caged them up I noticed the bugs, moths, and even the mice, suddenly got brave enough to annoy me! The birds are staying!

    Yes, a goat can/will step on a chicken, but the way I see it, a chicken is taking a chance just being a chicken! Everything eats chickens!!! However, they are smart enough to roost high, dodge my fat feet and wheels, and even duck when I take one of my regular tumbles while feeding/watering! I have yet to loose a bird to a goat, which puts the score thus far, 0 for the goats and two for me... I fell on a couple of chicks this past winter.

    Hope this helps you make an informed decission,
    Wing
     
  11. Starsmom

    Starsmom Well-Known Member

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    My goats and chickens work well together. I've only had a couple problems, one one or two occassions I have had a goat playfully headbutt a chicken. It did kill on rooster and I suspect a guinea hen as well. Not sure about her, but the rooster probably came at the goat in an aggressive manner and he thought it wanted to play, all I know is I saw that rooster go flying through the air and later that day it died. I didn't realize it was hurt it got up and ran off so I thought it was ok.
     
  12. hippiehill

    hippiehill Active Member

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    Just put a goat in with chickens. They pooped in the hay, then laid some eggs in it! I ended up spending $5.00 @ TSC for a hanging hay bag. No more hay problems, but lots of chicken poop everywhere else!
     
  13. HobbyfarmingMO

    HobbyfarmingMO Member

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    There is another issue when putting chickens and goats together ... prevention of coccidiosis that is spread from chickens to goats. There is a medicated goat pellet that you can feed. It's just as readily available at your local feed store as the non-med pellet. I feed it to mine all the time, without breaks, but mine are pets. If your milking them or raising them for meat you should check on it. Maybe someone on here will know. Good luck to you!
     
  14. witchysharon

    witchysharon Well-Known Member

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    I ended up spending $5.00 @ TSC for a hanging hay bag

    If it is the nylon mesh or braided type of hay bag, you might want to reconsider, especially if the goats have horns. Heard to many times goats get hung up/tangled and strangle or break their necks in the mesh bags. A little chicken poop is better then a dead goat. JMO
     
  15. happyladybug

    happyladybug Well-Known Member

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    my hay bags work well - but i have noticed that if they get empty the goats chew on them - curiosity i suppose - but they have ruined a couple this way -
    my goats also won't let the chickens to their feed so i have to feed the goats and then scatter some for the chickens.. i guess it's a work in progress...
    .
     
  16. moosemaniac

    moosemaniac Well-Known Member

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    Other than occasionally having to scoot a chicken out of the hay racks and removing poop, the biggest problem I have is the chickens love to sit on the backs of the goats, and the goats aren't too happy about it. And chicken poop on goat hair isn't pretty.

    Ruth
     
  17. Jcran

    Jcran Well-Known Member

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    I've heard that coccidiosis is species specific and chickens cannot share it with goats....any thoughts out there?
     
  18. Jen H

    Jen H Well-Known Member

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    I have been told the same thing about coccidiosis. My birds free-range, so they get in with the goats and occasionally roost in the critter barn. I haven't seen any problems so far.
     
  19. daytrader

    daytrader Well-Known Member

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    I have never had a problem with goats and chickens. It was never a issue. The old billy goats did their thing and the chickens did theres. No issue really at all.
     
  20. goatkid

    goatkid Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I know in a commercial dairy, you are not allowed to run any sort of poultry with your goats because it's not considered sanitary for the goats. I would also be concerned about chickens spreading bird lice to the goats. A friend had some chickens that would escape their pen and run around her goat farm. The adult hens did OK, but she lost chicks between the goats stepping on them and her cats and dogs hunting them. If you are raising chicks out of these hens, I would think they should be in a safe pen for chickens only.