Goats are arguably the most versatile livestock one could choose for sustainable, localized farming or homesteading.
Goat meat is often touted as the most commonly eaten meat in the world, by respectable sources such as The New York Times, Washington Post, and Gordon Ramsay – but there is no data to support this claim. The Washington post has issued a correction, but the myth continues. It is possible that some goat meat is eaten by the largest number of people, but in terms of volume, there is no way goat meat consumption worldwide surpasses chicken or beef, let alone pork.
- Personable companionship, similar to a dog
- Many breeds exist, allowing you to more closely match your relevant needs
- Milk. Up to 3-4L / 1 Gallon daily, when well fed
- Goat’s milk is naturally homogenized, and of comparative flavor and nutrition to cow’s milk
- Goat’s milk is tolerable for many people who cannot drink cow’s milk
- Very low maintenance
- Provide brush control
- Can be sustained on forage alone, but some supplementary Legumes are recommended
- Excellent ratio of labor-in to produce-out
- Produces valuable skins as a side product
- Male goats can smell terrible in mating season – not great for small gardens if you plan to breed your goats
- Must be milked regularly while producing, for up to 10 months
- Some goats can be quite noisy – bad for neighbors in urban areas
A good doe will yield a gallon of milk each day from a feeding of three to four pounds of grain and a few pounds of hay. (the latter helps keep her digestive system-healthy)
Goat meat, called Chevon, is delicious . . . and tanned hides from the animals can be used for rugs, vests, jackets, and other garments.
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