My first post with some ignorant questions

Discussion in 'Goats' started by Loundry, Apr 29, 2005.

  1. Loundry

    Loundry New Member

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    Hello everyone,

    Thank you for reading me and giving me some of your precious time. I'm a suburbanite with rural roots who wants to find a way back to the country life. I'll never forget that moment in my daily grind through traffic when I heard that radio ad for Bluebell Ice Cream and I got actual tears in my eyes pining for the memories of my grandparents' farm property! Hence I'm trying to find a way that I can support myself and my family on the land, and I think it's going to come down to making good, home-grown, high-quality food. Anyway, I have some questions about goats. Yes, I'm really ignorant.

    1. I have in mind a strategy of raising does for milk (and, then, cheese) and bucks for meat. Is this viable? (I want to be practical and smart, not romantic.) What else can you do with bucks? They seem "wasteful" since they don't make kids or give milk.

    2. What is goat meat called? Is it tender/yummy? (compare, say, to rack of lamb, beef strip steak, pork sholder)

    3. If you're going to slaughter a goat, how do you kill it? I'm not numb to the ramifications of this question yet -- still squeamish.

    4. Why goats instead of sheep?

    5. When and why do does start giving milk -- after they kid? Can they be inspired to do so without kidding? Do they keep producing milk long after they kid?

    Thanks for your help and your time! I'm very happy to be here. :)
     
  2. animal_kingdom

    animal_kingdom Well-Known Member

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    1. I have in mind a strategy of raising does for milk (and, then, cheese) and bucks for meat. Is this viable? (I want to be practical and smart, not romantic.) What else can you do with bucks? They seem "wasteful" since they don't make kids or give milk.

    Sell them

    2. What is goat meat called? Is it tender/yummy? (compare, say, to rack of lamb, beef strip steak, pork sholder)

    Cabrito/Chevon


    3. If you're going to slaughter a goat, how do you kill it? I'm not numb to the ramifications of this question yet -- still squeamish.

    4. Why goats instead of sheep?

    I like goats and sheep. Sheep are less work.

    5. When and why do does start giving milk -- after they kid? Can they be inspired to do so without kidding? Do they keep producing milk long after they kid?

    You can milk a goat a week or so after baby is born. But you need milk for the baby. Best to wait until baby is weaned. IF you have a milk goat you can milk her for 6-9 months before you want to give her a break.

    Thanks for your help and your time! I'm very happy to be here. :)[/QUOTE]
     

  3. Raftercat5

    Raftercat5 Kathy in S. Carolina

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    2. What is goat meat called? Is it tender/yummy? (compare, say, to rack of lamb, beef strip steak, pork sholder)

    Answer: Chevon/cabrito. I never ate goat meat. I think once you raise baby goats like I am doing for the first time this spring, you will NEVER want to kill a goat. They think of you as their parent, especially if you bottle feed the kids. I heard some people do eat chevon, and they say it's good. I still can't eat my chickens that are in the freezer, until the image of them laying on the table with their necks slit open while I pull out their feathers goes out of my head. It will take time.
    Pass the veggies, please!
    - Kathy in SC
     
  4. tyusclan

    tyusclan Well-Known Member

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    Yes, goat meat is delicious. If you butcher them young (1 year old or younger) it is very tender. For my own use, I like to castrate the bucks young. The wethers never develop that "buck goat" smell. You also don't have to worry about keeping them seperate from your young does. Goats mature sexually early and keeping young bucks and does together can result in unwanted matings. If you want to sell your bucks then don't castrate them. The bucks bring more than the wethers.

    There are several good books on home butchering. It's really not difficult. You just need to learn how. The book will guide you through everything and you can reference it as your butchering.
     
  5. Freeholder

    Freeholder Well-Known Member

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    Hello everyone,

    Thank you for reading me and giving me some of your precious time. I'm a suburbanite with rural roots who wants to find a way back to the country life. I'll never forget that moment in my daily grind through traffic when I heard that radio ad for Bluebell Ice Cream and I got actual tears in my eyes pining for the memories of my grandparents' farm property! Hence I'm trying to find a way that I can support myself and my family on the land, and I think it's going to come down to making good, home-grown, high-quality food. Anyway, I have some questions about goats. Yes, I'm really ignorant.

    1. I have in mind a strategy of raising does for milk (and, then, cheese) and bucks for meat. Is this viable? (I want to be practical and smart, not romantic.) What else can you do with bucks? They seem "wasteful" since they don't make kids or give milk.

    -Bucks can be used for meat, though it's best to wether (castrate) them young if you are going to eat them. They can also be used in harness, to pull a cart or a cultivator, or they can be used for pack goats if you like to go wilderness camping. Again, wethers work best for draft animals and packing, but better wait a little longer to castrate, so they'll be less prone to blockages from urinary calculi.

    -It is hard to butcher animals you've raised from babies, and it is also hard to butcher an old doe who isn't useful for milking anymore when you've been milking her twice a day for years. Both have to be done, though. If you sell them, you are just passing the job off to strangers, and stressing the goats in the process.

    2. What is goat meat called? Is it tender/yummy? (compare, say, to rack of lamb, beef strip steak, pork sholder)

    -I've eaten so many different kinds of meat, that it's all just meat to me now. (Moose, bear, deer, elk, bison, caribou, porcupine, beef, lamb, goat, rabbit, and so on.) Handled properly during butchering, and cooked properly, they are all good.

    3. If you're going to slaughter a goat, how do you kill it? I'm not numb to the ramifications of this question yet -- still squeamish.

    -A bullet from the back of the head (front of the head is so hard and dense the bullet may ricochet off it). Then cut the throat and hang quickly (upside down) so they bleed out thoroughly.

    4. Why goats instead of sheep?

    -Well, I like both, and if I had more land, I'd have sheep, too. But, I can buy wool more easily than I can buy raw goat milk. And the goats can provide some work around the place, too. I plan on using mine, when the buck and wether are full-grown, for pulling a cart, and for packing on camping trips.

    5. When and why do does start giving milk -- after they kid? Can they be inspired to do so without kidding? Do they keep producing milk long after they kid?

    -Mammals only give milk after giving birth (usually -- some extremely high milking lines will milk before they've given birth, but you probably can't afford goats from lines like this -- I know I can't. I've even heard of bucks milking in some lines.). So you'll have kids to deal with, if you want milk. A good dairy doe should milk for at least ten months. Then she'll need a couple of months off before she kids again. Some heavy and persistent milkers can be 'milked through', that is, milked for two or more years, at a slightly reduced rate of production, without being bred again. Not all does will milk for ten months before they dry off. Check with the seller, and look at their barn records. You don't want to buy one of the does that dries off after only seven months or so, because there are plenty of good ones out there.

    Thanks for your help and your time! I'm very happy to be here.

    -You are welcome -- I hope you enjoy your goats when you get them!

    Kathleen
     
  6. Freeholder

    Freeholder Well-Known Member

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    Just wanted to add, re: the sale of bucks bringing more money than the sale of wethers. This is true, however. You shouldn't be selling bucks unless you know they are really good animals who will improve most of the does they are bred to. Give it a year or two, at least, before you even think about selling bucks for breeding stock.

    Kathleen
     
  7. Jen H

    Jen H Well-Known Member

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    I cook cabrito the same way I cook lamb - it really is delicious stuff.

    If you have one of the big dairy breeds, the bucks or wethers (castrated males) make great pack animals and can pull good sized carts around. Wethers also make really nice pets.

    You slaughter a goat with a shot to the back of it's head. A 20/20 will do the job.

    I have both goats and sheep. The sheep are easier to keep inside fences and don't need as frequent hoof trimming. I find the goats are easier to train, but those smarts make them much harder to keep where you want them. They both tame down, eat weeds and brush, and are lots of fun to have around. The big dietary difference between them is goats need copper and sheep can't have it.
     
  8. jill.costello

    jill.costello Well-Known Member

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    You are marvelous! [has tears in eyes from laughing]. I would love to be the person "inspirational" enough to convince a doe produce milk without kidding....

    Thank you for making this grumpus smile today!

    -Jill
     
  9. tyusclan

    tyusclan Well-Known Member

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    Most of the goats sold for meat (in my area, at least) go to the Hispanic community and they prefer the bucks. The wethers bring nearly nothing.