HOW TO FARM SUCCESSFUL WITH BOER GOATS IN THE Kwazulu Natal Midlands
By Kevin & Vanessa Collocott
Our Boer goats have adapted to an 80% grazing and 20% browsing programme on our farm. Grazing consists of Kikuyu pasture during the summer months; and Oats, Barley and Rye during the winter months. During winter we supplement with hay and Maize.
2 Mating season
We do not put our Does to the Buck before they are a minimum of 12 months old and then at least 60% of their adult body weight.
With regards to weaning, for slaughter animals, we prefer to have the bucks weaned at a minimum of between 22-25kg and this can occur as soon as 2, 5 – 3 months. For does we wait until they are at least 30kgs before weaning them – usually at around 5, 5 months of age.
In KZN, because we are intensive and on pasture, we have to deal with very high loads of Wire-worm (haarwurm). We have a very specific dosing programme devised for our particular farm put together by our local veterinary representative, which we stick to rigidly. Our best defence against wire-worm is to use “Cydectin LA” – it is expensive but worth it in the long term due to the 141 day residual that it carries. We also use “Tramisol” and “Nem-A-Rid” at specific times of the year, as well as “Ex-A-Lint” on the kids for milk-tapeworm
We prefer not to sell off the farm as this is a security problem, so we sell our slaughter stock off at the local sales yard on the 2nd last Monday of every month. KZN is the biggest market for goat meat in the country, so being in the market is very helpful.
5 Do the farmers farm intensive, semi-extensive or extensive?
6 Home remedies
We do not use any specific home remedies, but are willing to hear from other people as to what they use.