Goats were domesticated by humans thousands of years ago. My experience with goats dates back to the about 1978 when I bought two Alpine dairy goat does. I milked those two does in three states, Oklahoma, New Mexico and Texas as we moved around the country. Based on my experience, goats are the most domesticated of all animals except the common pets like dogs and cats.
One of the two original does I purchased produced large quantities of milk. In 1981, she averaged five quarts per day for ten months. The goat weighed no more than 120 pounds.
Goats can greatly enhance chances for survival in abnormal economic circumstances. They produce significant quantities of wholesome milk and meat. They thrive even when eating sparse vegetation. They are small and easy to handle compared to cattle.
I plan to keep a herd of dairy and meat goats at the Grouse Creek property. In preparation for moving to Utah, I bought three dairy goats in October of 2009. The two older does were bred by an Alpine dairy buck within a month of their purchase. The following pictures show the does and their babies born in April 2010.
The goat pictured at the right is Molly. She has the best disposition of the three adult goats. Her ancestry is mixed. She is 1/2 Oberhasli, 1/4 Nubian, and 1/4 LaMancha, all dairy goats but with distinctive physical differences. For example, Nubians have long, pendulous ears while LaMancha have almost not visible ears.
|Sadie has the same father as Molly making her 1/2 Oberhasli. Her mother was an Alpine.|
|Annie was born to Sadie on April 5. This picture was taken when she was two weeks old. I helped Sadie give birth to Annie. When her front feet and nose were protruding from Sadie, I pulled on the feet with the next contraction. Annie came out in a rush. She tried to stand almost immediately after birth. Annie was walking within 15 minutes. At two weeks old, Annie is very active. When younger she slept long periods. Now she stays with her mother and nibbles at the green grass.|
|Molly gave birth to twin bucks on April 16. The twins are virtually identical. They look very much like Annie except that they don't have any white one them. The picture shown at the right was taken when the baby was four days old. I was disappointed that Molly, my favorite goat, had two male babies.|
|Angel is the third goat purchased in October 2009. She is 3/4 Nubian as evidenced by her pendulous ears. She is the most curious of the goats, frequently testing things in her mouth for taste. Angel is a year younger than the other two adult goats and is undersized for her age. She may be pregnant, due in July. |