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What’s this breed coming to?
By Fred VanderMartin clwyer@gmail.com
Rancho Volsa Basias www.rvbboers.com

I guess I’m just old fashioned. I have clothes that have been out of style so long they are coming back in style, although I sure would look funny in my hip hugger jeans! I like to listen to old country music, the more classic the better, because I can’t really tell the difference between Pop music and Country music any more. To me, crossover is a silly word, and today’s Country music just sounds so…. Manufactured! I like to cook and eat some of the favorite things my Mama did. A lot of it is just plain ingredients like cabbage and hamburger meat and rice and beans. None of that sushi or organic or free range foods for me. A pork chop is a pork chop no matter how it’s raised!

I like many other things the way they used to be such as open cab tractors, cars and trucks with a set of points and a carburetor, and those big, deep bodied, heavy boned Boer goats. Now don’t be surprised! You should have seen it coming when I mentioned “old fashioned”!

I have a lot of Friends on Facebook that are in the goat business. They breed every type and breed of goat in the world from dairy to meat to “pet” goats. (them little bitty pigmee type goats I like to call Cornish Game Goats!). The predominant breed raised by most of my friends is the Boer goat. I like to look at the beautiful pictures of the goats and the awards that they have won and I have noticed a peculiar trend. For the last few years the winners have been the wide chested and wide loined goats with little depth of body and a high tail set. They appear to be much smaller too. I guess these animals would produce good kids with lots of muscle. I would have to question how good this body style is if the Doe has to kid. It would seem that the more tubular shaped goats wouldn’t have much capacity for the kids and the feed it will take to develop them. I think, and this is MY opinion, that they also seem to have more problems when kidding.

The market wether Bucks and Does have kept to this trend and I wonder just how long it can go on like this. If the drought continues to go on unabated and the last old style goat walks across the scales the market wether breeders will have to stop flushing the Does and let them produce their own selves. There will be a lot of assisted births and Does and kids dying. Also somewhere along the way the judges have decided that the middle weight goats are the most attractive so market show goats are bred to be kind of small. I was talking with a friend and speculated what would happen if they started doing carcass evaluations on the winners of these shows. We pondered how today’s market wether would grade out. Another thing we wondered was what would happen if the shows were judged by the folks who can look at an animal and tell you the true value of a goat- an order buyer! That would surely upset quite a few apple carts! How would the Ag Teachers and County Agents supplement their income?

Anyhow, I have been noticing quite a few larger, deep bodied animals bringing home the fancy rosettes in the breed shows. The does display the wide, long, V or wedge shaped bodies that have a lot of capacity for both kids and forage intake and seem to have that look of a doe that will kid easily and produce plenty of milk to sustain her offspring. The Bucks are getting back to the heavier and wider framed largeness that makes the Boer breed what they are; the premier meat goat breed. I hope this trend continues because I sure would like to see my old fashioned nannies along with my hip huggers come back in style.

The East Texas Goat Raisers Association invites all folks to participate in their Fall Sale on Saturday, September 17th. We will start checking in animals at 7:30 a.m. until Noon. Animals will be sifted for obvious health problems prior to sale. Knots, other than those caused by recent injections, will exclude an animal from sale. The ETGRA acts as an agent only. Soundness of the animal as well as accuracy of information contained on the registration paper, application to register and service memo are the responsibility of the seller. Please see the sales rules at http://www.etgra.com/sales.htm . The sale will start at 1 p.m. This will be an open sale with folks with meat, dairy, and pet goats invited to participate. Our last sale was a success with buyers leaving with good stock at fair prices and sellers who were satisfied with the results of their transactions! Details will be added as I get them.


 

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