Goat or Alpaca?

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by JBirchall, Nov 9, 2010.

  1. JBirchall

    JBirchall Out Of The Brooder

    13
    0
    22
    Apr 19, 2010
    Hi all,

    I work on a school camp and we have a massive chook pen but only have 9 chooks (after loosing about 4 dozen to foxes). We are currently looking at getting about 15 new chooks because we hate having to buy eggs, but we are wary of doing this because of the fox problem that always seems to occur over the summer. We have a new major electronic fence in place and since the installment of that, we haven't lost any chickens, but this is our first summer and that is when majority of the carnage happens.

    We were told in passing that putting either an alpaca or a goat in the pen would help protect the chickens because both of these animals act defensive against foxes. Would either of these animals be suitable to live with chickens? Space is no issue, but I don't want to lose any more of our chickens especially because nobody is around on the camp from mid december till mid january. Any solution is a good solution!!
    I also thought that the school kids would LOVE to play with the new chickens and either a baby alpaca or goat!

    I have also posted this in the "Social" Forum.

    Thanks so much!
     
  2. KimberlyJ

    KimberlyJ Chillin' With My Peeps

    749
    2
    121
    Jun 13, 2010
    Alpacas are herd animals and must be kept at least in pairs, 3 is better. Alot of alpaca owners have LGD's or a Llama in with their alpacas to protect them. So I would't think alpacas would protect chickens. The presence of a larger animal may deter the foxes somewhat though. But from what I've seen while working on the alpaca farm, the most alpacas do to protect themselves is tightly herd together while the dominate female clucks a warning that sorta sounds like a chicken!

    I have heard from one owner that a group of her females with crias at their sides stomped a stray cat to death to protect their babies.
     
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2010
  3. D'Angelo N Va.

    D'Angelo N Va. Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 28, 2009
    I raise Alpacas and let me tell you...they are not guard animals...get a llama if you want protection...
     
  4. MysticScorpio82

    MysticScorpio82 Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 2, 2009
    Maine, USA
    Goats really aren't a good idea to have with the chickens, not because they will harm the chickens, but because they LOVE chicken feed which can kill them if they eat too much of it. Also keep in mind that a goat is also a prey animal that may bring in more predators. I like the suggestion about the llama. Sorry I am not more help on the subject!
     
  5. akcountrygrrl

    akcountrygrrl Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,024
    18
    173
    Apr 3, 2010
    Nenana, AK
    Okay, so I just forgot which it was the old farmer told me would keep foxes away. Was it the geese or the turkeys???? One is supposed to deter aerial predators (note: does not work with ravens) and the other is supposed to deter foxes. I got both. I haven't had a bird that was in my fenced enclosure with the turkeys and geese get killed by a fox in 2 years now and I see fox walking around the outside of my fence on almost a daily basis. The turkeys do try to run off the ravens but the ravens are just too persistent.
     
  6. panner123

    panner123 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 15, 2007
    Garden Valley, ca
    Either a llama or a donkey will work. My DW prefers the donkey, because it goes off five mintues before her clock in the morning. She says it is much better to wake up to. Plus, when there is danger in the yard you know it.
     
  7. justbugged

    justbugged Head of the Night Crew for WA State

    7,878
    12
    273
    Jan 27, 2009
    Enumclaw
    I would go with a Llama, they are very alert to predators, and they hate coyotes. All you have to do with a llama is remember to not let them have the car keys and a credit card, because if they get them the next thing you know they will be at the mall using your card.
     
  8. Gypsy07

    Gypsy07 Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,286
    25
    193
    Feb 4, 2010
    Glasgow, Scotland
    Yes, llamas make good guard animals. It works because they really prefer to be in a pack, so if you keep just one, they 'adopt' whatever you keep them with as their new herd. But it's not always an ideal situation for the llama. They really do prefer to be with a group of their own kind. Problem is, if you get two or three, they'll hang out together and ignore the animals you're wanting them to guard!
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by