Are Alpine goats friendly?
First common questions asked by any potential goat farmer. Well, Alpine goat is friendlier than any other goat breed in the world.
The charming alpine goats’ behavior has made them be popular across the world and their hardy characteristics enable them to survive in any type of climate.
There are a lot of facts about alpine goats over the internet but this article stands out since you will be able to understand every detailed information pertaining to this breed of goat.
Well, in this article you will be able to discover more information about the origin and history of the breed, physical characteristics and how to care about them.
Origin and History of Alpine Goat
The breed of goat is popularly termed as the best domestic dairy goat breed and it is known to have originated from French Alps.
Alpine is great milk producers and this is the reason behind their popularity across the world. The content of the milk is said to be highly nutritious and good for general body health.
The research conducted by our experts shows that the milk contains vitamin K, D, E, B, A, and C. A lot of companies processing cheese, butter, ice cream, soap and among other products have opted for the milk from the goats rather than those of the cattle.
Many American farmers are turning up in large number to be the great keeper of an alpine breed of goats than other farmers in Europe. The breed of goat was introduced in America at around 1904.
The goat breed is mainly kept for commercial milk production purpose. The goats are medium to large in size. The robust feature enables them to survive in both cold and hot climates.
There are a lot of journals that describe the history and origin of the goat breed in a rusty way. This is the reason behind the scarce information about the goats.
Types of Alpine Goats
Several research and technology advancement has resulted in many grades of the goat. Here are some of the typical subgroups of an alpine breed of goats:
These are the purebreds of the alpines and they are said to have originated from France. They were originally known as French Alps but in the present days, they are termed as Alpine Polychrome.
The name indicates that they have multiple colors. These goats are hardy and great milk producers just like other types of alpines. They are suitable for commercial dairy farming business and also for a backyard farm.
This type of alpine breed developed as a result of crossbreeding between French alpines and American alpines. These goats are typical of the largest breeds in America and a lot of American farmers love them for commercial goat farming as well as a homestead.
The research shows that these goats are very strong and robust as the original French alpines. The female goats are also great milk producers for family consumption and also commercial purpose.
The breed of goat originated from Brienzer region of Switzerland. They are popularly known as Oberhasli goat breed. The general color of the coat is warm red-brown but the muzzle, belly, face, and back are black in color.
The good thing about the type of alpine is that they are very strong and hardy. Swiss alpines are a dual purpose breed of goats. They are great milk and meat producers.
The importation of goats in 1904 and 1912 spearheaded crossbreeding. This is the reason behind the development of rock alpines.
According to the research done by our experts shows that the breed was brought into existence by Mary E. Rock who is based in California.
The crossbreeding resulted in rock alpine which is a prolific milk producer for both domestic and commercial use.
The breed of alpine came as a result of crossbreeding between French alpines with Grison goat breed of Switzerland. The goats look like Togg but they are generally black and white in color.
Many American farmers keep the breed of goat for shows and milk production. The amazing looks and stunning shape make them suitable for shows.
Characteristics of Alpine Goats
Size and Weight
The goats are medium to large sized animals. Male goats are about 81 cm tall while the females 76 cm at wither. The average weight of male goats is about 77kg and those of the female counterparts is about 61kg.
The goats occur in multiple colors and they have erected ears. The goats have horns regardless of the sex but the male goats have beards.
The goats are graceful and very alert due to the erected ears. They are also very friendly both to the owner and other flocks in the yard.
They attain maturity at the age of about 4 to 5 months for buck goats while doe kids attain maturity at the age of about 5 to 6 months.
The breed of goats have strong genes and they have the ability to withstand both hot and cold weather climate. These robust goats can survive in all type of climate and weather across the world.
Why You Should Consider Adding Alpine Goats in Your Farmyard
Here are some reasons why you should add these goat breeds in your homestead:
Strong and Hard
The goat breed does incredibly well in all type of climate and weather. They have strong genes that enable them to tolerate various types of weather.
Great Breeders and Mothers
Alpines are awesome goat breeders and the female knows how to take care of their young ones perfectly. They will tend to protect them from predators and also intruders on the farm. Expect some butt kicks in case you harass their offspring
Prolific Milk Producers
Many alpine varieties are kept for commercial dairy purposes since they tend to produce a lot of milk despite feeding their young ones. They can also supply your family with very nutritious milk throughout.
Intelligent Goat Breed
These goats are super intelligent as compared to other breeds. You cannot easily tame them with great goat proofing and strong fence. They have a capability on how to find a way out of the yard if you are not careful. The only way to tame them is to tie them down in order to inhibit movement.
Friendly and Lovable
Alpine is very friendly and sociable. This enables them to live peacefully with other flocks on the farm. You should note that these goats do well in a farm that has several breeds of livestock. It is a breed you cannot afford to live without.
How to Care For Alpine Goats
It is quite easy and simple to raise these goats. The good thing about them is that they can be bred at home and even for commercial purpose.
In order to get good result out of the breed, you are required to ensure they are healthy and this is easily attained by taking good care of them.
The following are some special care and management of alpines in the farm:
- Take good care of the offspring by giving them adequate milk and foods
- Ensure you feed your goats twice per day that is in the morning and evening
- Provide good foods such as treated corns, green grass, pellets, and alfalfa hay
- Supply the goats with clean and fresh water to drink
- Milk the female goats twice per day
- Create a grazing ground for the goats
- Provide warm and comfortable goat shelter
- In case of any disease consult Vet immediately for diagnosis and treatment
Terms Used To Describe Alpine Goat Colors
Here are some of the terms used to describe the alpine colors:
- Broken Chamoisee – Refers to the solid chamoisee color that is broken with another color which is banded or splashed.
- Pied – Spotted or molted skin coat color
- Chamoisee – Brown or bay colors popular in male goats
- Two-tone Chamoisee – Hindquarters are brown or grey while the front quarters are light
- Sundgau – Skin coat that has black and white markings
- Cou Noir – Goats with black neck
- Cou Clair – The neck is clear while the hindquarters are gray and those of front are tan or saffron
- Cou Blanc – The neck is white together with the front quarters and the hindquarters have black or gray markings.
I have kept alpines in my farm for over some decades now and I can testify that they are the best breed of goats to add in your farm. They are the type of goats that can be easily be managed and handle by even beginners.
There are so many farms across Europe that deals with an alpine goat for sale and this can be your chance to start goat farming in your homestead. You can even decide to start goat farming for commercial purpose.
If you happen to have alpines in your home, kindly share with us their stories in the comment form below and we will highly appreciate.