Managing your property with goats

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Managing your property with goats

Postby mannytheseacow » Wed May 21, 2014 7:33 pm

I've been fighting rough ground and invasive species for over a decade now, both at my own place and at work. I took off with this endeavor of using goats to do the work for me. It's not a new concept but I needed to know for myself how it worked before encouraging other people to do it or offering a service to others.

Many people ask me, "why do you have goats?" I don't drink milk and I don't need to be milking something. Well, my land is just good goat habitat, and not good for much else in the way of livestock. Plain and simple: goats flourish here.
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In my first real experiment, I turned yearlings (4 goats, 2 sheep) out on a 1/2 acre paddock for seven days. Look at one side of the fence, then the other... that's kind of a before and after:
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It's pretty amazing for 7 days. Not to mention they're still small so they can't knock some of the bigger brush/smaller trees over.

I spent way too much time building a fence for them, too. I've switched to poly mesh electric portable. I picked up 1300 feet on the Craigslist for $50 and I hope to never drive another metal post again. So the plan is, once I get my place cleaned up people will pay me to put my goats on their place to clean up their place. I don't pay for feed, people pay me for service, then I eat the workers. What could be better? Goat biryani, anyone?
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Re: Managing your property with goats

Postby pa_friendly_guy » Thu May 22, 2014 12:36 pm

I insured a large property that used to be a local factory, when the factory closed it became a ware house operation. They had about 90 acres of land included with the 5 acre factory building. The manager of the property was a good friend of mine, the owner of the property allowed him to keep goats on the land. I asked him about it one time and he told me that it was my fault that he kept goats. It turns out that years before I insured the property an insurance inspector told them to mow the brush behind the main building as a fire precaution. He did not feel like paying an employee to mow that area every week so he got goats to keep it clean. They did an excellent job of cutting and mowing the brush. He raised a special type of meat goat that people from the middle east like, he sold them in Pittsburgh. Win, Win :D
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Re: Managing your property with goats

Postby matt walker » Thu May 22, 2014 2:00 pm

Amazing photos Manny, what a difference. I had the owner of the facility I'm working at this week ask me just yesterday about goats for property maintenance on their new facility. I think you could be real successful with the operation Manny, and holy cow did you ever get a deal on that netting.
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Re: Managing your property with goats

Postby George Collins » Thu May 22, 2014 7:50 pm

Jack Spirco of The Survival Podcast interviewed a fellow a couple years ago who made his living doing this very thing. It was a really good interview. At the time I was still researching electrical fences for containing pigs. I shot the fellow and email which included my phone number. Almost as soon as the "send" button was clicked, my phone rang. The gentleman, whose name I can't recall, talked with me for probably a half hour or so about electric fencing.

Might be worth your time to seek out that interview.
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Re: Managing your property with goats

Postby George Collins » Thu May 22, 2014 7:54 pm

"Solve world hunger, tell no one." "The, the, the . . . The Grinch!"

"If you can't beat them, bite them."
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Re: Managing your property with goats

Postby mannytheseacow » Sat May 24, 2014 12:17 pm

Yes, I feel a bit silly for not doing this sooner. It seems that many people are aware of how effective goats are. George, that's a great podcast, thanks for sharing. I started listening and thought to myself, "I already know about all this" but I learned a lot during that hour. Not just about the fencing, but the forage nutrition value, time in paddocks, and combining the livestock dogs. It's also great hearing other peoples methods and experiences.

matt walker wrote:holy cow did you ever get a deal on that netting.


It was a great deal, but re-reading my post you may be thinking of the 6x6 net, which would have been too good to be true. What I got was 1350' of the polymesh rope or "intellirope" so if I run two strands I get 675' , 3 strands 450', etc. It came with 50 posts, 100 clips and 2 hot handles. Still a great find. I can push those posts in just about anywhere, even in my rocky ground, and my small flock is already trained to the fence. I'm not comfortable putting them out overnight with it due to predators but it's great for intensive grazing in small areas. I can set it up in 20-30 minutes and they tear down that area in a day.
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Re: Managing your property with goats

Postby pa_friendly_guy » Sat May 24, 2014 12:49 pm

A friend of mine used to keep goats. She told me that you really didn't even have to fence them if you had enough land. What she did was to stake the dominate Doe in an area that she wanted cleared, she said the others would not get very far from her and they would not leave her. [ she did not have a Ram, only Does ] She let a bucket of water out at the ropes end for her to drink and she was good to go for the day. It almost sounded too good to be true to me, but she seemed to know her goats, and she swore by the method. And besides she was bigger and stronger than me and I felt she could take me, so I wasn't about to call her a liar. :lol:

PS And besides I know nothing about Goats. :?
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Re: Managing your property with goats

Postby SilverFlame819 » Sun May 25, 2014 7:39 pm

matt walker wrote:I had the owner of the facility I'm working at this week ask me just yesterday about goats for property maintenance on their new facility.


Lol! And what did you say, after you wiped the horror and distaste off your face? :D
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Re: Managing your property with goats

Postby mannytheseacow » Tue May 27, 2014 1:21 pm

pa_friendly_guy wrote:
PS And besides I know nothing about Goats. :?


That makes two of us, Guy. :lol: I'm figuring it out one day at a time.
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Re: Managing your property with goats

Postby pa_friendly_guy » Tue May 27, 2014 2:14 pm

:lol: I see, so you plan on having many " Learning Experiences " I take it . :lol: That is the best way to learn. ;)
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