Goat farming: how to become a successful goat farmer
Goat is one of the most lucrative and less stressful livestock to farm/rear. This livestock farming business is so lucrative that it has produced many millionaires and have helped many countries to grow their economy and have rendered numerous employment opportunities to many jobless people.
Goat is a very important animal to rear because it serves many helpful purposes in the life of anybody in any country!.
This is the reason I decided to put down this article in order to teach people about goat farming and how to be a successful goat farmer.
I repeat!, nobody can run away from goat in his/her live, this is how important and useful this animal is because many things we eat and use on daily basis are gotten from goat, for instance, milk and meat.
We all know the various foods milk are made with, so am right! you can’t run away from goat products wether you like it or not!
Now let’s dive into the topic, and read carefully as i teach you about goat farming and how to become a successful goat farmer so that you could tap into this lucrative agro business, and also all the informations you need to know about goat.
Types of goat
Before I go into the details of explaining about how to rear goats successfully, I think it is very necessary to first of all enlighten you on the types or breeds of goat so that you make your choice depending on your environment and many more.
There are many different types/breeds of goat. Many people requires large/big goats while some persons requires small and medium sized goats. Many prefer floppy ear goats while others might prefer only perky. But anyway, not minding the type and what ever characteristics you are looking for in a goat, there are numerous options and choices you have to make, depending on what you want to rear them for and the environment you want them in.
Some popular among them are:
The Pygmy is a kind of funny looking goat by it’s appearance. The limbs of this goat are not proportionate to it’s body and the goat itself is short and compact.
The Bucks have long beards and this breed’s standards basically state the hairier the better.
The female are no taller than 22.5 inches and the male should be about 23.5 inches or even shorter.
The Saanen is known as the largest of the dairy goat breeds. They are known to be very soft and tender and eager to please and very adaptable to varying climates.
They possess erect ears and short fine hair. The Does are at about 30 inches tall and weigh at least 135 pounds. The Bucks are to be at least 32 inches tall and 160 pounds weight.
This Franch Alpine breed of goat is originally or ha it’s ancestry from the Swiss Alps but was bred to be larger in France, This breed is also known as the Alpine Dairy Goats.
The Does (female goats) are at least 30 inches at the shoulders and at least 135 pounds in weight.
The Bucks (the male goats) are estimated to be at least 32 inches at their shoulder and at least 160 pounds in weight.
They are normally said to do well in any climate and weather condition, they have many different varieties of color, and they have small upright ears, and looks like that of a classic goat.
This breed of goat, the American LaMancha was bred in Oregon, but the ancestry of this breed is traced back to Spain.
This type/breed of goat have an extremely short ear pinnae, many people do call them the “earless goats” this is because there are no reasonable ear flaps, but they do as a matter of fact have ears!.
There are also two varieties of LaMancha ears,they are Gopher and Elf. Elf’s ears are up to 2 inches in length and are only on the female ones. Gopher’s ears have no cartilage. LaManchas are excellent dairy goats with high amount of milk production, regardless of the type of ears they possess.
This type of goat are normally quite and calm and very gentle and so have made excellent 4-H Goats. The female should be at least 28 inches tall at the shoulder and at least 130 pound weight.
The male should be at least l 30 inches tall and at least 155 pounds weight.
This type of goat is a smaller Swiss breed of goat. The Does are to be at about 26 inches at the withers and weigh at about 120 pounds and the bucks should be at about 28 inches and weight at least 145 pounds.
This breed of goats always have soft hair and small but erect ears and white markings with a solid color.
This breed of goat is popularly known to be the “fainting goat” this Myotonic goat has it’s name from the Myotonic congenita that causes stiffeness and the fainting effect, they are well known for.
There are many varieties of Myotonic breeds (Tennessee Fainting Goats are popular) with some reaching 200 pounds or more. Smaller Myotonics are between 80 and 100 pounds but all the breeds are considered calm.
The Nubian is a large, sturdy, and quite a vocal dairy goat. They are known for their long, floppy ears and can come in any color or pattern.
Nubian goats should be at least 30 inches at the withers and weigh at least 135 pounds. Bucks should be at least 32 inches tall and weigh at least 160 pounds. If you are looking for a pet kid Nubian, make sure they have tested negative for G-6-S, a disease that only affects Nubian goats.
Nigerian Dwarf/Igbo Goat
The Nigerian dwarf goat looks like a miniature Alpine. The maximum height for does is 22.5 inches at the withers and for bucks 23.5 inches. They are described as gregarious and friendly and are great milk producers like their larger cousines.
Any color or pattern is allowed and they are the only breed of dairy goat to occasionally have blue eyes.
Like I stated earlier , before choosing the type or breed of goats to farm/rear, it is important to know the main purpose of the farm, be it for mainly milk production, meat production or skin production, when you have any purpose in mind, then choose the most appropriate type of goat that will fit into your purpose so that you have profitable return on investment ( ROI).
Preparation of goat farming
As I have explained some types of goat, I hope you have now made your choice on the type to farm, now let’s dive into how to farm them.
In the preparation process, before anything else, you will need a farm/place to grow them, it can either be a farm house, barn or even an empty shade.
Building a farm is the most serious type of goat farming as you have enough land and it also portrays you as a big goat farmer an a professional than growing them on barn or store.
To build a goat farm, you need a land!. The land should be big enough to contain the number of goats you have in mind to invest in and also must be away from the city because of environmental pollution that comes from the city which is not good for the health of the goats.
Also make sure the farm isn’t very far from the market, so that it could save you the excessive transportation money to transport the products from your farm to the market.
When the land is available and you have cleared and uprooted the trees in preparation for the farm building, Pick a date with the farm construction firms to build standard goat farm house for you.
When you are done with the construction, order the breed of goats you want to grow and start growing them.
Any size of goat is okay to start, depending on your budget, but starting with adult goats is best (if you can afford them in large number) as they will mate in a short while and have kids.
If you want to start with small goats, just know that is takes between 10 months to a year + some month before a kid will grow and mate, depending on the breed.
How to take care of Goats
Buying of goats is one thing and taking care of them is another thing altogether.
Although goats are among the few domestic animals that have the lowest mortality rate, this does not mean that they won’t die if they are not properly taken care of.
Here are how to take care of them:
Feeding: In every livestock farming, feeding is the most important thing as every living thing must feed or it die, goats are not different from this.
The way goats are fed and what they feed on is very amazing and nice, that is why goat is a very lucrative business.
They are fed with grass and some waste food materials like yam peel, Plantain peel, vegetables and goat feed which is a supplement to them.
This is so good and lucrative that heavy money is not invested in feed which will reduce your return on investment (ROI).
To feed them, take them to a grassy safe field and leave them to feed themselves or take the grass to them in the farm or give them yam peel, plantain or their feed.
Their food should be always available regularly!.
Water: Just like feeding, water is also another thing that they shouldn’t lack at all!. Without this, they will be dead in a matter of days, so it is very important to always make sure they have good and clean water.
Their water container should be placed a little bit above the ground so that they could not release dungs inside the water and also drink it, it may cause some sickness to them.
Grouping them: When the goats arrive in the farm, especially if they are adult goats, it is important to group them depending on the largeness of their houses.
Although goats like to stay and walk large number, but they also need space in their houses, so separate them in Groups so that the rooms could contain them and they move freely.
Another important thing is to have more Female goats than the male, this is because the few male will mate with the Does ( female ) and get them pregnant, this will maximize your profit.
Have an empty spare room where you will separate the nursing does with their kids so that they will be feed with more nutritious foods and they will also be less stressed by the others.
Exercise them: The goats should be exercised from time to time, so that they wont be bored and grow weak and also they will grass in the process.
This act will have some health benefits on them and also save you the stress of getting their food as they will feed on the process.
Cleaning should be done when you release them to exercise, with that opportunity, their house should be cleaned and the cleaning should be done on every 2 days or daily, depending on the number you have.
Vaccination: So many types of viral diseases such as the PPR, foot and mouth diseases, goat pox and bacterial diseases like anthrax, brucelosis and many more. are very harmful and deadly for goats.
This made the application of good and proper vaccination a must to avert these types of diseases. The Does which was not vaccinated for PPR, goat pox, brucellosis vaccines previously, they should be vaccinated on the fifth month of gestation period.
The kids must be vaccinated of PPR vaccines when they reach up to 5 months of age.
Also in the in the shower summer, mix their water with mineral salt and also avoid letting them out in rain and also always be in contact with a veterinary doctor and let him/her handle any of them that shows any sign of sickness and separate that one from others, just in case it is a communicable disease, so that other will be safe.
When they are mature enough to to start releasing milk, then you start milking them, the Does produce milk and the male don’t!.
To milk them, it is either you do it in the traditional manual method of using hands to be pressing their breast gently while having a container under them where the milk will be storing.
Or you buy a milking machine which will do the work for you easily and more hygienic. Big firms do use this machine for milking their cows and goats and so you might try and buy it too.
Advantages/Importance of goat farming
There are many importance of goat which is why they are costly and good and lucrative to farmers who are into the goat farming agricultural business, they are.:
Goat produces milk. It is suprising that many people up till date still think that milk production is done with only cow, this is laughable because goats also do product milk and it’s milk is in fact considered the best milk and it has no cholesterol which is very healthy for the body.
Goats meat is the most popular product of goat. Just like it’s milk, the meat is considered the best meat by many people mainly because it is tasty and aromatic and softer than cow meat. The male goat is the most tasty and aromatic though.
They are easy to rear and grows and multiply quicker.
Goats are lucrative because they are easy to rear and grow, this is due to the fact that they feed on anything like grass, food wastes like the yam peel etc, this will save you the money for feed and boost your profit because goat is a very costly animal, even more costly than cows.
Also they grow quicker which is another boost for you as you don’t have to wait for years before they could mature and have kids, No! Some good breeds have matured and started mating in 10 months or a little bit more, and a single female goat could produce up to 3 kids at the same time. This is a profit doubler if you ask me.
In goat farming, you don’t even need to spend more money on buying the male goats as only 2 males can impregnate about 50 or more Does in a short while once they mature.
Another reason why goat is expensive is because no religious believe is against either goat meat or it’s milk, infact those who don’t eat cow nor pig tends to relly more on goat which makes the demand very high.
As I have said before, goat farming is very lucrative and can make you successful if you are dedicated because the market is huge, both in the local and in the international market, this also means that your country’s economy could also be boosted from goat business.
Another great advantage of goat farming is that it has low mortality rate and this will reduce your cost of production drastically.
I hope this article have helped you alot, help and spread the love by sharing on social networks, who knows you might also help another person who needs this information.
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