newbie

Discussion in 'Cattle' started by redron, Jun 5, 2005.

  1. redron

    redron Member

    Messages:
    24
    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2004
    Location:
    utah
    Hi There You All,
    I am going to be getting a homestead very soon. It has been empty for over 4 years. I want to know what I should put in the pasture--cattle or goats????I don't know what is growing out there. I don't know how to tell what is good of bad for the animals.

    I know that I will need some goats to clear off all the rest of the property of over growth. What kind of goat should I get for this?
    I don't know if I will be living on the homestead right away. The house needs some work. If I have cattle out in the pasture, how long can I leave them there by themselves? I mean how often would I have to return to the homestead to feed them? There is a big watering trough out in the pasture and shelter. What would be the best breed to start with?

    I am excited and scared at the same time to start this venture. I keep looking at all the work is needed out there. Yet I have always wanted to leave on a farm to support myself with good food and good work.

    I will be grateful for any help that you can be on my new adventure.
    Veronica Sandberg
     
  2. genebo

    genebo Well-Known Member Supporter

    Messages:
    1,634
    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2004
    Location:
    VA
    Veronica,

    You've really made it tough on yourself. You need to know if there are toxic plants in the pasture and if the fences are sufficient to contain the stock. I use 3 strand electric for Dexter cattle and 5 strand electric for goats. Dexter cattle do a pretty good job of clearing brush by themselves if you don't want goats. However, the two coexist very well, even making things better for each other.

    It took me a year of establishing pasture and fences before I put any animals in and I'm glad that I did it that way. Establishing a good pasture is hard to do when the animals eat every blade of grass as soon as it sprouts.

    Leaving them alone requires good pastures, good fences and some shelter. The fence must be good enough to repel predators, since you won't be there to protect them.

    Try to select hardy breeds that are capable of managing without you. Some take too much care to be able to do it.

    Don't rush. Raising cattle and goats is a slow business. A year spent getting ready can be invaluable.

    Genebo
    Paradise Farm
     

  3. pygmywombat

    pygmywombat Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    233
    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2002
    Location:
    Northeastern Ohio
    I would wait until you are already living there full time to get any livestock. Fences can be broken, water troughs can leak, and animals can get into mischief. Until then, brushhog the pastures a few times to get the weeds and grasses under control, get someone (local farmer or extension agent) out to tell you what is growing out there, plan or repair your fences, get your shelters/ barns in shape, and have some fun researching and visiting the types of cows or goats you want. County fairs are always fun to see what is being raised locally and you can make good contacts for buying animals.