what makes cows and goats different?

Discussion in 'Goats' started by sunnygrl, Jan 10, 2007.

  1. sunnygrl

    sunnygrl Well-Known Member

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    Besides the obvious !!! :p ... I have been reading in the cattle forum that if a cow has twins and they are boy/girl the heifer will be sterile. Does this not happen with goats?
     
  2. Jim S.

    Jim S. Well-Known Member

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    In cows, about 90 percent of heifer twins are freemartins, which are females with a masculinized behavior and non-functioning ovaries. It happens because free hormones from the bull calf sterilize the heifer in the womb. It can also happen in goats, but is much more rare. Apparently, there normally is a much lower incidence of free hormones in the womb in goats than cows. But it DOES happen. Because it can happen (or mosaicism or other sterility can occur), most breed standards with which I am familiar include an upper age limit for first kidding.

    As a cattle farmer, I cull against any twins, which are rare in cows as far as my own experience. They just don't pencil out, even as terminal calves, if you factor in lower rate of gain and generally poorer health/higher maintenance costs.

    As a meat goat farmer, I cull against anything more than two kids, for basically the same reasons.
     

  3. computerchick

    computerchick Keeper of the Zoo

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    You can end up with a sterile goat or a pseudo hermaphodite in polled X polled breedings...but they have to be 'smooth polled' where both parents are polled (Polled being the dominant condition)...

    As to twins, I haven't heard of it happening, but I'm sure it does...not an almost 'definite' as when dealing with heifer/bull twins.

    Andrea
     
  4. ozark_jewels

    ozark_jewels Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Out of many, many sets of triplets and hundreds of sets of twins, we have *never* had one that wouldn't breed.....
     
  5. southerngurl

    southerngurl le person Supporter

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    Goats = Smart

    Cows = Dumb

    :D
     
  6. ozark_jewels

    ozark_jewels Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Yah ain't met my Jerseys....... :p
     
  7. Caprice Acres

    Caprice Acres AKA "mygoat" Staff Member Supporter

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    I don't know why you'd cull out the multiples; Oftentimes they do just as well as the others, and you get more out of your does in sale prices... As well as the more kids, the more milk the doe will produce. Her body DOES adjust to 'litter' size.

    My mini doe had quads this year. Three does, one buckling. One of the does was stillborn because of my error (long story) but the other two does and buckling did fine. Three of 4 were normal sized. However, one was the size of a guinea pig, and about 1/2 the weight of the other two. Not sure she was going to make it, I took her and her brother inside for bottle feeding (thier sister stayed with mother to be dam raised). I eventually sold the brother and still have both does. Well, to this day Giselle, the runt, is about 5 lbs smaller than her sister, Havyn. They are now a little over 5 months old. My twins from last year were consistantly 5 lbs smaller, so I don't think the number of kids has very much to do with livability. I'd rather my young does (especially First fresheners) have 2-3, because the kids are smaller in size, rather than one big kid... *shudder*

    Not that I"m saying your practices are wrong, just saying that it's not common to do things that way... Most goatowners WANT multiples... It's usually taken as a very, very good thing if your doe will give you multiples.
     
  8. ma1bob

    ma1bob Victory Gardener

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    We will bottle feed any kid that looks too weak to fight for its fair share of teat time. Our one doe had triplets last year. One was strong as hell, while the other two were on the downward slide. Bottled fed the two. Now all three doelings are prego. Worth the effort.

    Cheers

    Bob
     
  9. susieM

    susieM Well-Known Member

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    Cattle don't pee into their own mouths, in order to consider themselves 'sexy'.
     
  10. sunnygrl

    sunnygrl Well-Known Member

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    LOL :p :) :p
     
  11. Vicki McGaugh TX Nubians

    Vicki McGaugh TX Nubians Well-Known Member

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    We have as few twins here as we do singletons, we mostly triplet and quad, and for us quads as much as most folks triplet. But we bottle. We only let our boers nurse 2 kids, and usually 2 bucks, even if they were fostered dairy bucks. Just like a profitable dairy farm does things, that is something a homesteading farm would think is inhumane...so it is the same for meat herds. Anything other than twins......... who in a herd full of 100 does kidding with 100 more due in 12 weeks, is going to bottle the triplet small kid? When you start factoring labor in, it likely would suprise you just how much that extra kid is not making you. Vicki