Alrighty, I want to play the "what-if" game/zombie plan game. This is the scenario and give me your advice, I have experience with chickens and quail, but the others I don't. I know these scenarios aren't ideal, because face it, if we could we would let all our animals have huge amounts of ample space and all the foraging their little hearts desire, but stick to the scenario. Free-ranging is not an option, closest thing is tethered foraging under immediate supervision. Scenario: You're living in a tent or pickup truck with a partner, so two people.. Then to exercise that homesteading spirit and frugal living, what would the most economical "livestock" be. I was thinking a couple of chickens, because two hens don't take up much space. Space and feed wise, chickens are really an economical meat source. So two hens.. Letting them live in a small tractor. Since space and mobility is an issue, maybe a large wire dog kennel? Take the plastic floor out and let them have access to the grass through the bottom. It won't keep them safe from anything that will reach through the bars, but it's more protection than tethering. I've kept quail before and I know that they are EXTREMELY economical, a small wire cage and they have plenty of room to live and breed. Providing eggs, that will hatch in 17 days and in a few more weeks provide meat. ((I love my quail)) Rabbits. I've heard rabbits are economical and a good source of meat. Hearing the quote somewhere that a pair or two of rabbits will provide more meat in a year than a cow. How much space do rabbits need? If I were to try this experiment in the backyard(with the animals not me in a tent or truck. LOL), how many rabbit cages do I need? I have 3 wire mesh cages that were designed for rabbits. Buck and doe have to live seperate, correct? Does the doe need a specific cage to give birth in? I know she needs a whelping box, but can one of those fit in a wire rabbit cage? How long do the young stay with her or at what age do I seperate them out into I guess the third cage? If I designed a rack to hold the three cages in a vertical manner, one on top of the other, would that be sufficient for a breeding pair and their young? Now for the question of a goat. I am very, very skeptical on this one. How much space of a single goat? I would look into a dwarf nubian scrub goat for this project. There is a breeder down the street who has a few does that are lower quality then she wants, so she was thinking of rehoming them for scrub goats. They may not be good for breeders, but I figure they'd be fine as milk goats. If I were to have a dog house, in a small chainlink dog kennel, would it be sufficient for a mini-milk goat? Supervised tether foraging at times of course. Good quality grain and hay provided. Ideally she'd produce a single kid, when bred to an outside buck. Milk the doe when needed and then allow the rest to her kid. Once the kid was weaned, it could be sold or eaten. Since two goats would be unideal in this situation. ((I know they prefer to be in groups, but you didn't see homesteaders keeping two family milk cows just because they'd get lonely)) Also, since it's a dwarf breed, I have to stick to a dwarf/mini stud, correct? I'd be asking for trouble if I bred a dwarf nigerian to a boer or nubian or other standard breed goat, correct? Then the almight question! Is it cheaper to keep a couple of hens, 4-5 quail, a MINI-milk goat, and a pair of rabbits and their brood(until eaten obviously) or is it cheaper to just buy eggs(*gag*), meat, and milk from the store? Again, please stick with the scenario. No free-ranging, supervised tethering only. No more than a single goat. No permanent structures, animals must stay in moveable pens only. Hay and proper grains will be provided. Have fun, no fighting! If I'm missing a possible farming food source, let me know what it is. No large livestock, space is limited.