Hi all. We acquired our first goats this year and everything is going smoothly with the exception of one thing. The matriarch of the herd of 5 has a bad habit of yelling at me constantly. Our herd consists of:
- 1 French Alpine (about 5 months old),
- The mamma Nubian (3 years old) and her two kids (now 4 or so months old)
- An unrelated bottle baby Nubian (6 weeks old)
Annie (the mom) bleats almost constantly, although she is provided with all a goat could ask for. I move them from their home base paddock, which has plenty of good browse, to other bountiful browsing paddocks regularly. I provide them with fresh water throughout the day and they actually have their choice of running spring water or warm water i fill into a bucket. Both of her kids seem content and healthy. She herself seems healthy overall and shows no signs of illness (that i can tell). If i walk into their paddock she quiets almost immediately and begins browsing.
The incessant bleating is making us consider getting rid of her, and it's becoming temping to start looking up goat recipes.
Any ideas that don't involve butchering? I'm starting to hear that goat's voice in my sleep.
If I had a penny for every Nubian owner who was in the same situation... Let's just say, I would be driving a really spiffy car.
Nubian goats are LOUD!!
I know so many people who start with that breed in our area and sware off goats forever. Mine is 1/16th and she is so much louder than my other goat.
If you look for a new home for her, make sure that they understand goats. If they aren't experienced with the breed, then they will be in the same situation as you are now. Can they offer lasting and consistent care that is equal or greater than what you can give her?
You could sell her for someone else to eat. That way you avoid the sadness of processing her.
Maybe someone else can suggest a solution to stop the noise. It sounds like she sees you as her flock and as the matriarch, she wants you to stay close.
Thanks R! We were wondering if we added another wether or two if she would shut the he11 up. Maybe it would make her feel more relaxed and less stressed? We have plenty of room but are trying to grow the herd slowly and not take on too much responsibility, but if adding another male or two will shut her up, we're probably up for it.
For the record, we would be heartbroken if we lost any of the other 4 but I would have ZERO sadness processing that goat. If she was a wild animal making that much racket she would have become dinner a few months ago.
Honestly, everything I have heard about Nubian goats agrees with R's experience. The best revenge is eating well.
From my research, American Lamanchas are quiet, as are Saanens. But individuals vary according to environment. If the environment changes, so might the behaviour. I have read that it's also the tone and pitch of the bleat that can make goats either really noisy or blend right into the environment. Nubians and Nigerians bark, apparently, whereas Guerenseys, for instance, are lower in pitch and mellower. Independence factors into it too; needy goat breeds, like the Nubians and Nigerians, are more likely to bleat for attention, which paired with their piercing barking bleats, makes them uniquely unsuited for either close-quartered illicit keeping, or keeping a ways away from their people, but still in hearing distance of neighbours. Toggenburgs, however, apparently only vocalise when they want something, and are fairly independent, as well as having a lower, less harsh tone.
Good luck, Frank, and bon appètit,
A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.
-Robert A. Heinlein
I was curious about this problem so I went to a breeder of Nubian goats to find out if loud constant cries are normal. (I have heard other folks I know complain about noisy Nubians)
First thing I noticed was his goats were pretty quiet (he has around 100 Nubians in two paddocks).
What I found out is that when a Nubian goat becomes attached to a human, they expect a lot, and I mean a lot, of attention from that human.
They will bleat till the cows jump over the moon to get away from the racket unless the human is close at hand.
What has probably happened here is that the Momma was already attached to a person (at the place you acquired her) or became attached to you and now she expects you be with her all the time.
If you don't have a way to get away from your new goats, selling or eating might be the best answer, or you might try putting her with a male for a while to see if that quiets her down.
I have had goats for about 15 years; dairy goats for the last 10 years. I prefer the Toggenburg dairy goats over the other breeds. They are quiet! If you hear them, you need to go see what's wrong. They are friendly if handled regularly and are medium sized. I highly recommend them!
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