Thursday, October 29, 2009

Goats and Business

I've alluded to this several times over the last few months, but haven't really detailed what I mean when I say that I want to have goats.

Here's a link to an article from the Shenandoah Valley News Leader about a company that's doing what I want to do:
Gourmet goats graze on unwanted plants

Here's another article, this one where a conservation commission used a farmer's goats in Mass:

I have a google alert on the word "goat" so that every day I get a list of times the word has shown up on the internet. Mostly it's listings about goat cheese or a movie that's coming out soon, or sports. But once a week or so, I see an article about a company that's doing exactly the business I want to do. It helps bring me back to why I'm here and give me a bit of energy.

So, now you know the true scoop. Capische?


  1. Well, I'll be darned. How many goats do you contemplate having? Would you breed them and use them as dairy goats also? (Although that would entail another whole aspect of goat keeping, wouldn't it?) How would you transport the goats from job site to job site? Obviously, you've research this out and find a need for this kind of thing in your area? Wow. Who knew? Velly intellesting.

    I know goats have somewhat of a bad rep . . . smelly (the females are not AT ALL), cantankerous, they'll eat and destroy anything in sight (not true), etc. But we've found them to be delightful animals each with their own distinct personality. Just like people, some are loving and cuddly, some are aloof, some inquisitive, some mischievious, some couch potatoes. They're easy to handle and their manure is dry and easy to clean up!

    I think you'd love working with them. Anxious to see how this idea of yours progresses.

  2. Mama Pea - yes, I've done tons of research, including spending time with 3 companies out west that are doing it. One had 60 goats, one 250, and one 600 goats. They all use stock trailers or horse trailers to move the goats. I think I'd need 60-100 to make it viable here, but I'm still a few years away from being able to put anything on my land. It's mostly a dream now ... sigh.

  3. Wow, you are talking goats! You're a very intelligent gal and know how to do your research. Remember, if you don't have a dream, how you gonna have a dream come true?

    What a great business to have to be able to hire (or better yet, apprentice) interns! You would get the needed help and what a good opportunity for young people to learn working with animals and the environment . . . in the healthy out-of-doors. On a living, working homestead. Farm. Business. Dream come true.

  4. This is VERY COOL! I read Heidi last year, was that your favorite book/movie as a child?? Actually there really weren't enough goats in it for you! Is this something that you start on a smaller scale, or do you just need to jump in with 50 or so from the start? This roadtrip gets better with every turn! And do you get the Great Perenese dogs, too?? I know that is spelled wrong, but can't think right now of the right way. What kind of things are between now and then??

  5. Oh yes - DEFINITELY start small, like maybe 5 goats! Easier to make them go away if it doesn't work or is too hard. Charge per head per day, so herd size doesn't matter that much. I've read that llamas and donkeys can be guard animals as well with the bonus that they eat the same things that goats do. We'll see...