Q:

What are some tips for beginning a Boer goat herd?

A:

Quick Answer

People considering starting a Boer goat herd need to create a fenced area with appropriate shelter for their goats, set up water troughs and prepare to clean the troughs regularly, and build covered feed bunks to protect feed from rain and extreme heat. Boer goats prefer to eat scrub and brush rather than pasture, and dividing pastures into grazing sections and rotating the goats keeps the goats active.

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Full Answer

Goats kept in small areas have an increased worm load. Owners need to regularly medicate their goats to keep them healthy. Many butchers will not slaughter goats for meat until 60 to 90 days after they have been medicated with wormer. Natural wormer options include diatomaceous earth and pumpkin seeds. Owners can avoid having to worm their goats by keeping them in larger pastures and by butchering kids young.

Owners also need to consider potential predators when starting their Boer goat herd, including dogs, coyotes and people. Dogs and coyotes chase goats and may kill them if caught. People can throw harmful objects into the goats' pen. Owners can purchase a livestock guardian dog, such as an Anatolian shepherd, or they can use mules, llamas or donkeys to protect their herd. Some owners run two sets of fencing, with goats in the inner section and the guardian in the outer section.

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