Goats & tarps

Discussion in 'Goats' started by lgslgs, Sep 4, 2006.

  1. lgslgs

    lgslgs Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,429
    Joined:
    May 30, 2005
    Location:
    Southeast Ohio
    We have our goats in a group sized calf hutch, and now that the cow is getting bigger things are starting to fill up.

    We were thinking of building them a front porch. We've dismissed the ideas of just using plastic tarps over a frame, but after seeing mpillow's photo album we are revisiting the idea.

    Does anyone use tarps of any sort as part of their goat house structures or compounds? If so, how's it working for you.

    We were concerned that the goats would shred the tarps in short order - but mpillow's tarp looks like it's holding up.

    Our goats only use their shelter at night or when it's raining. They free range the rest of the time.

    Any thoughts?

    Lynda
     
  2. xoxoGOATSxoxo

    xoxoGOATSxoxo when in doubt, mumble.

    Messages:
    2,025
    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2006
    Location:
    Saginaw Bay area, Michigan
    I don't use tarps for anything but rabbits and ducks, so I don't know how'd they'd work for goats. BUT... I would think that if the goats couldn't reach it, it would be okay. The problem, I think, would be the sides of the tarp, used to block wind. Maybe you could get one of those extra thick tarps?
     

  3. Nancy_in_GA

    Nancy_in_GA Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    455
    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2004
    Location:
    NE Georgia
    On the sides, you might try sandwiching the the tarp between two cattle panels, offset so that the vertical wires are staggered. This gives them less "biting space."

    To stop drafts one winter, we covered the open side of our 3-sided shed like this with two layers of heavy gauge (6 mil) plastic in between. The goats did bite a few holes in it, but never managed to get through both layers.

    We used the white translucent plastic, and the reflection from the sun shining through it actually made it lighter inside the barn.
     
  4. delphinium

    delphinium Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    758
    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2006
    Location:
    PA
    I use heavy duty tarps combined with high-5 cattle panels and a chainlink dog run for my goats and chickens. The tarps cover two sides and the top of the chicken's dogrun (which is connected to the goat's cattle panel enclosure) and one side and a portion of the area over the goat pen - sort of giving them a porch under which there is a cedar doghouse, a dog-igloo, a hayrack and food dishes. The tarps are on the outside of the panels and have gone unscathed in the year we've used them. In the spring we used a panel made from a small tarp to divide areas for the nursery and the main run - this also worked great. The does ignored it other than to seek shelter from rains and the kids played with it, bouncing off of it, pawing at it - but it held up for the few weeks I needed it and is still in good shape. I plan on constructing a hoophouse utilizing tarps and cattle panels for the chickens to use this winter and may do one for the goats as well.
    I am convinced that, with a little ingenuity, some tarps, zip-ties, u-posts and cattle panels I can make just about anything. lol.
     
  5. AllWolf

    AllWolf We love all our animals

    Messages:
    1,402
    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2005
    Location:
    VA, KY & TN Line
    I use tarps for my goats but fixing to order the most heavy duty ones because it soon be winter time here and need something to keep everyone nice and warm.. The tarps I getting is really tough, waterproof and mildew proof also.

    Good Luck on yours.
     
  6. goatkid

    goatkid Well-Known Member Supporter

    Messages:
    2,133
    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2005
    Location:
    Montana
    My friend uses a heavy duty tarp over the top portion of one of her goat houses and plywood for the bottom.
     
  7. lgslgs

    lgslgs Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,429
    Joined:
    May 30, 2005
    Location:
    Southeast Ohio
    I really appreciate all of you folks helping out with ideas. Not sure what to do yet, but I just wanted to point out how much I really do appreciate you all taking the time to tell me how tarps are working out for you.

    Goat folks are just plain nice. :)

    Thanks.

    Lynda
     
  8. trob1

    trob1 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    236
    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2006
    Location:
    Tennessee
    I used this to keep the hay outside and dry while they ate. It worked so well and the goats didnt bother it at all.
    It is two 16 foot cattle panels folded over, staked to the ground and a tarp attaced to it. I also had it where two different pens of goats could use it.

    [​IMG]
     
  9. Freeholder

    Freeholder Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    5,665
    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2004
    I have exactly the same set-up for my bucks, with the shelter divided into two pens -- but my tarp comes to the ground on both sides. I also have, for my does, one of those Costco carport shelters (10' X 20'), partly lined with cattle panels (the goats have two-thirds of the shelter, the rest holds the milking stand, baby pen, and feed storage), and with an outside pen also.

    Both shelters stood up well for the first year they were in use. I didn't even see the goats try to chew on them. However, the wind made some small holes start, where the tarps rubbed on the cattle panels (we get a lot of wind here), and when I tried reinforcing the rub holes with tape, that made the goats notice, and they started chewing. They have twice destroyed the side panel they can reach on the carport shelter (it's partly inside their outside pen), and have chewed on what they can reach of the other side -- mostly the bungee cords that hold the tarps onto the frame. The other shelter, the cattle panel one for the bucks, is now almost completely without a roof. They have shredded two-thirds of it. I'd replace that tarp, but I'm in the process of putting up a new shelter, one intended for agricultural use and hopefully with a heavy enough tarp that they won't be able to damage it. This will house the does. When they are moved into their new shelter, then I'll take down the old doe shelter, and combine it and the other one that blew over last spring into one slightly longer unit (by cutting the horizontal members down to four feet). This will become the new buck shelter, with a large heavy-duty tarp over it. This tarp will be mostly out of their reach (higher ceiling), so will hopefully last more than just two years.

    If I was here permanently, I would ferrocement both shelters, and not have to worry about tarps again.

    However, in spite of the difficulties with critters eating their own house from over them, they have weathered two winters in these open-ended shelters and come through in good condition. They always have a dry place to lay down out of the wind, plenty of food and water, and they do fine. It does get fairly cold here, below zero at times, and as I already mentioned, quite windy.

    Kathleen
     
  10. Jillis

    Jillis Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,680
    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2005
    Location:
    Northeast Kingdom of Vermont
    I visited a local cheese producer who has a large herd of valuable, registered Alpine goats. Her husband had built the most beautiful barn I've ever seen. But they also had one of those large greenhouses set up, with a LOT of goats in it. They put fencing up along the sides, so the goats couldn't chew through or knock down the tarps. There were pens inside the tarp-barn, and feeders and etc. The front door was open.
    Now, I had just had a tour of the regular barn. It was a BITTERLY cold and windy northen VT day with tons of snow on the ground. When we went into the tarp-barn, which is covered in the white greenhouse material (plastic? heavy duty tarp?), it was noticeably WARMER in there than in the barn.

    Which is why we are planning to use the same type of structure for our large barn. It's cheaper. AND you don't have to pay extra taxes on your property because it is not a permanent structure!