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

  1. redron

    redron Member

    Messages:
    24
    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2004
    Location:
    utah
    Hi You All Out There,
    I just posted on the cattle link, but part of that question needs to be answered here. I am getting a new homestead soon. It hasn't been lived in in over 4 years. It is all overgrown--the pasture and yard. I think that I will need some goats to clean all of this off. What kind of goats should I get to do this? Also could I use the milk from a goat that is clearing off the site? It is over 8 acres, how many goats should I get to clear all of this off. Will I have to supplement with other foodstuffs?

    What else will need to take care of the goats? What kind of shelter do they need? Do they stay out in the pasture at night or do they need shelter?

    This is all so new to me. When I was a girl we had an acre and a quarter. We had chickens, ducks, geese and lots of other birds. We had two calves a year. Which my brother's raised. We also raised one sheep. We had one goat for about two months. We bought it for milk for a sick calf we had. So all of this is fairly new to me. I have some books, but not on goat raising yet.

    I would appreciate any help any of you can be to me.
    Veronica Sandberg
     
  2. JoyKelley

    JoyKelley Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    397
    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2005
    Location:
    Florida
    I also bought goats 'cause I needed help clearing and what I ended up with is 7 sweet freinds. Yes they need food, very clean water, worming, regular hoof trimming and good dry shelter but I will leave it to the old pros to tell you more. I have only had my crew for little over one year . I only wanted to tell you be prepared to loose your heart. You have no idea how attached you will get to these unique and wonderful animals
     

  3. Jen H

    Jen H Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,832
    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2004
    Location:
    Washington
    Most people with goats on pasture also put out grass hay for them to munch on. You'll have to provide minerals.

    For most of the year a 3 sided shed is fine for shelter. They need to be able to get out of the rain and out of the wind. Depending on how cold your winters get they may need an enclosed barn - goats can stand a lot of cold if they can get out of cold drafts and wind.

    Whether they stay out on pasture at night or get shut up in the barn depends on your comfort level and predator situation. I'm surrounded by wilderness and have coyotes, cougars, and bears go through my yard - all of my animals spend the night behind 4 walls. A friend who lives closer to town and is surrounded by dairies keeps his goats on pasture at night with no problems.

    Yes, you can use the milk from goats that are clearing brush. Some plants make the milk taste stronger, but there's nothing unsafe about it.

    If you search through the sheep forum, there's a thread listing poisonous plants - you'll need to go through your land and remove those or fence areas off so the goats can't get to them. Normally, goats won't take more than a mouthful of the poisonous plants because they don't taste good - don't trust the goats to show good judgement about that, though. Some of them have overly adventurous pallets and can get into real trouble.
     
  4. animal_kingdom

    animal_kingdom Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    567
    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2005
    Location:
    PA
    Two of my all time favorite books are: Storeys Guide to Raising Dairy Goats and Gail Bowman's book called Meat Goats for Profit.

    I read and re-read these books alot. Over the winter, I refresh myself with the entire of each book.

    Take things one step at a time. It did help me to read the books first before I "set up shop" with them.

    Knowledge brings confidence.
     
  5. T Lynn

    T Lynn Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    63
    Joined:
    May 12, 2005
    Location:
    Texas
    There is a book called "Making Money with Goats" by Ellie Winslow. It has alot of information about managing goats that I found very helpful as a newbie myself. It also tells you what you can do with the goat milk. Good Luck with your goats.

    A word of caution. If there is anything that you do not want them to eat like rose bushes, fruit trees, flower beds, be sure that it is fenced off. Otherwise, these will be the very first things that will be eatten. Learned from experience when the 2 legged kids let the 4 legged kids into the yard. Oh, well, maybe those roses will survive. :rolleyes: