Chickens and Goats - the first meeting

Discussion in 'Pictures & Stories of My Chickens' started by Dinornis, Oct 15, 2019.

  1. Dinornis

    Dinornis Chirping

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    Before we got chickens, our backyard was home to three (now six!) nigerian dwarf goats. Crazy cute animals, and crazy smart as well. When we first got our chicks in, the goats noticed right away that we weren't spending every second outside with them, and that we were constantly heading into a sizable wooden building, from which eminated a constant peeping. I've never seen an animal more eager to figure out just what was in that building. The goats tried to reach the window to see what was inside, and constantly gazed at the building which was, by the way, the coop.

    Flash forward about 6-7 weeks later, and the girls were ready to head out into the open, away from the brooder. We constructed a temporary fence outside, just to get the girls used to the outside before introducing them to the goats. We held our breath as the chickens took their first cautious steps outside and (slowly at first, but more confidently as the minutes wore on) began to fill the air with their clucks.

    The goats immediately rushed over to check out and, sure enough, both "leaders'' of the two species eventually met up. Leia, the ''doe-in-charge'' stuck her nose through the fence and lightly nibbled on the tail feathers of our head hen. That did it, and Leia was promptly treated to a swift peck on the nose. When the temporary fence was taken out, things got pretty interesting. The smaller three goats now prefer to hang out with the chickens, interestingly enough. And the hens love all the outside space, especially foraging for bugs, centipedes, and whatever they can get their beaks on, They also scratch around in the goat house as well, which is also useful.

    A pretty good pairing if you ask me. I've heard mixed opinions on keeping chickens and goats together, but my experiences have been pretty good.
     
  2. FortCluck

    FortCluck Crowing

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    Oh wow this gives me hope for when I get goats!
     
  3. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years.

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    I've seen photos/videos of chickens riding on the backs of goats. I guess the chickens pick off some bugs and the goats don't mind.
     
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  4. FortCluck

    FortCluck Crowing

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    I want to see pics of that! I know at our local rescue zoo they have chickens in with the goats and most of the animals.
     
  5. NHMountainMan

    NHMountainMan Crowing

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    Curious - as I want to add goats in the future and need to convince my wife... do the presence of goats provide any predator protection?
     
  6. FortCluck

    FortCluck Crowing

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    :lau you'd think it would be the other way around. Just bring a goat home, it's cuteness will convince her!
     
  7. alwaystj9

    alwaystj9 Chirping

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    I have run chickens, an occasional turkey and pygmy/nigerian goats together for years. The goats do not keep any predators away. Biggest problem is feedtime separation and keeping the goats out of the chicken pen (goats are very destructive and very able climbers/jumpers). I use a piece of stock panel to allow the chickens access out into the pasture, the squares are too small for the goats to get through. I have had a few goat babies get in the chicken pen and get up in the roosting areas & laying boxes and make a mess. The chicken feed is not good for goats so the chickens are fed and locked in overnight, this also allow me to feed the goats without the chickens getting in the middle of that feeding frenzy. My chickens are not shy and have no problems stealing large amounts of the goats' feed or eating all the creep feed before the baby goats eat it.
     
  8. Dinornis

    Dinornis Chirping

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    likely not against any larger predators, unfortunately. I would assume the goats would defend themselves if the predator threatened them, but if it just went for the chickens, they'd likely bolt without any consideration.
     
  9. NHMountainMan

    NHMountainMan Crowing

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    Dang it- I’ll have to rely on cute baby goats to convince her!
     
  10. Callender Girl

    Callender Girl Crowing

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    Some years ago, when one of my miniature goats had to spend a few days at the "large animal" vet's farm, Artie was housed in one of her barns. He was so lonely without his goat buddy that he escaped twice to go hang out with her chickens.

    My current goats show little interest in chickens, even when the occasional hen goes over the fence into their pasture.

    Small goats are no protection from predators. Unless said predator is scared by animals that stomp the ground when threatened.

    But I don't know how anyone resists the absolute cuteness of baby goats. It's impossible!!
     
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