Nubian goat questions!

Discussion in 'Other Pets & Livestock' started by jettgirl24, Nov 8, 2011.

  1. jettgirl24

    jettgirl24 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 21, 2010
    Duvall, WA
    Hi All - I know there are some goat people on here so I have a few questions for you! I'll probably post on BYH as well for some additional input [​IMG] We've been thinking about getting goats for awhile now. I was really wanting Nigerians and have done some research on them but out of the blue we've been given the opportunity to get three Nubians. I don't know a whole lot about the breed, although I think I've read that the are good milk goats? Is this true? We would like them for pets/brush clearers as well as for milk. I'm still waiting for some more details on the trio, but I do know that there are two boys and a girl - a doe and buck kid and the other adult is also a male, but I don't know if he's a buck or a wether. From what I've learned about goats I know that I definitely don't want a buck! So if the second adult is a buck, is there an age after which you can't castrate?

    I also have a fencing question. We're on 5 acres and have 6' tall 3-rail horse fencing around our paddock and pasture areas. I know I will need additional fencing for the goats - should we go with 4' or 6' tall livestock panel? Or is there a better option that livestock panel?

    Lastly - How much feed do Nubians generally eat? We have quite a bit of brush around the property for them but I assume they'll need additional feed. I've got a loft full of high quality timothy that they would be fed. Do most people feed additional supplements as well? I assume the doe will need something else during milk production/pregnancy?
     
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2011
  2. mama24

    mama24 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 7, 2010
    GSO, NC
    Aw! I typed out a long reply to this yesterday, but my computer decided to restart to update without asking me first in the middle of it! Stupid netbook! Can't believe no one else replied! Anyway, I don't have my goats yet, but I can answer some of your questions. You need to feed your goats goat minerals. That's priority #1 in feeding since it sounds like you have good forage and hay. Make sure to wrap the hay with fencing with spaces just big enough for them to eat it through the fence or put it in a raised hay rack/feeder so they can't climb and poop all over it. You can free feed the hay. Feeding feed is optional according to everyone I've talked to, unless the goat is producing a lot of milk. Most people still feed their goats a small amount of feed daily (about a cup of pellets, goat or general livestock) but it seems like this is mostly to stay in the habit so the goats come for feed and are easier to catch. lol. 2 cups or more for milking goats. I would say if you are milking and milk production drops, you know you need to up the feed. If you are not milking, and the kid is older and eating well, it's not so important. As for fencing, if your wood fencing has big enough openings for the goats to fit through, you can add some welded wire or livestock panels onto your current fencing just so they can't get through. They will climb over or through anything they are able to. If they have horns, make sure the fencing has small enough spaces that they can't get their heads through and caught. I was told 4ft fencing is bare minimum, 5ft is better. I'm planning on doing a small permanently fenced in area with either livestock panels or welded wire (2x4inch spacing is what I was told is best), then moving them frequently with a portable electric fence to clear brush. Good luck!
     
  3. rwbwfarm

    rwbwfarm Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 24, 2011
    NY
    Nubians are great milkers! Mine is bred back so is dried off but easily gave 3 qts a day - I don't push my guys. If the adult male is a buck, you may have to have a vet castrate him as they're too big for a normal size bander.

    We use livestock panels for our goat pens - ours are the 5 ft. ones. Knock on wood, we've never had a problem with them climbing, jumping, anything. I did have a doe who had horns & couldn't figure out how to get her head back out & she went down the road (we didn't get along anyway...). Our others are dehorned so that's not an issue anymore [​IMG].

    Minerals are def. a priority & if you're going to milk the doe now, def. grain. I give my milkers 3-5 cups per milking (am & pm) depending on the doe. Everybody else just gets a little bit. I use the Blue Seal pellets as I've found that too much molasses can make the milk taste off (my opinion [​IMG] ). I def. agree with putting the hay in a feeder - goats waste alot more otherwise.

    Hope this helps!!
     
  4. HorsebackandHappy

    HorsebackandHappy Out Of The Brooder

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    May 23, 2011
    I love my nubians! The cons are they can be louder and more vocal than other breeds, especially at feed times. I'm lucky and mine are pretty quiet, but their noise is some of the biggest complaints about them. they also may not produce as much milk as a swiss breed such as a saanan, but if they come from good lines that produce well they can produce as much as a gallon or more a day at peak. (A saanan from good milk lines can produce up to 2 gallons a day at peak! WOW!)

    The PRO's are the milk is richer/tastier than many other breeds. It has more butterfat content, so if you are making butter or cheese it is an excellent choice! My nubians are also very friendly, even my buck is a big puppy dog. (A stinky puppy dog! lol)

    If a doe is milking she should have grain, a growing goat should also have grain. But otherwise, if the animal is a good weight, and healthy then a good grass hay or pasture/browse is just fine. A free choice goat mineral, such as Manna Pro sold at TSC, is recommended. Most people also feed a milking doe Alfalfa grass or pellets, it helps her produce more, and it makes the milk tastier.

    To keep a doe from having "goatie" milk, she needs to be housed away from the buck (the wether is fine). His smell can taint the milk. She also needs to be milked in a clean environment. goat milk is more fragile than cow milk and will absorb the odors around it. Getting it cold FAST is the key.

    Don't get rid of your buck to quickly (If you get them). You may find it difficult to find a buck to breed to. I found it impossible in my area, so I ended up getting my own. (LOVE HIM!)


    Another Pro are the EARS! LOVE THE FLOPPY EARS!!! LOL! However, they are a bigger goat, so if you are wanting a small goat then don't go with a nubian. My buck is only 9 mo old and he's a good 120 pounds already! My doe is only 10 mo and she is already a good 115-120 pounds as well. My buck will probably mature at around 220, my doe at 165-180. But there are smaller lines where the does get about 130-150 or so, it depends on genetics.
     
  5. debilorrah

    debilorrah The Great Guru of Yap Premium Member

    I love my nubians too. I have found that once we built them playgrounds, they stayed away from the fences except to scratch themselves. And to cure that, we use a horse comb on them and they LOVE it! They are very lovable, social goats. They are also playful, which can be a problem if you aren't paying 100% attention. I have never been knocked down by ours, but *cough* someone else has been. [​IMG]
     
  6. mama24

    mama24 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 7, 2010
    GSO, NC
    I already got a bunch of supplies for mine. I'm getting 2 Nubian mixes. I think 1 is half Saanen (can't remember what the ones I picked are exactly, I chose them out of a group of like 15!), but she is too little to be bred this year. They are still at the farm I'm getting them from and the bigger one is in with the bucks for breeding. My friend wants to keep them till December sometime to make sure she's pregnant before I pick them up. [​IMG] I got a brush at TSC to brush them with. I think it said it was for hogs, but it was stiffer than the horse brushes, and I thought it would be better for their coarse hair, so hopefully that will be nice and scratchy enough for them. [​IMG] The 2 I'm getting were mother-raised in a large herd, so I'm planning on doing a lot of daily handling to tame them so they're easier to milk when the time comes. So far the supplies I got are a heated water bucket so I don't have to worry about ice, some rope halters, a large bag of minerals (Manna Pro), electrolytes (for the move b/c of the stress, for in case they get sick and for during kidding), a bottle of mixed goat vaccines, syringes, pellet dewormer, probiotic powder, some various medical supplies just in case, and a feeder. Probably more, but that's all I can think of. I need to get some hoof trimmers, but they only had one pair left and they were super expensive, way beyond reasonable, so I didn't get them. I'm very excited! lol. I also got a bag of sweet feed, but I've been taking a scoop of that out to the back pasture daily to try and lure the deer out of the woods. Every single day, morning and evening, we've had at least 7 deer in our pasture. Then hunting season started and I haven't seen a single one. But they're eating the feed, probably after dark. Plus I got that as more of a treat for the goats, I was planning on getting something a little healthier plus some alfalfa pellets for pregnant girlie when I actually get my goats. [​IMG]
     
  7. HorsebackandHappy

    HorsebackandHappy Out Of The Brooder

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    May 23, 2011
    Get the orange handled hoof trimmers from Jeffers Livestock. That was what was recommended to me and mine work very well, and they are not expensive [​IMG]
     

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