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Why burros,donkeys,or mules?  RSS feed

 
Ben Mosley
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Location: Upstate,SC Zone 7a
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Something odd is happening around me.Cattle and horse farms are adding burrows,donkeys,or mules in with their cows and horses.Why?One older man I talked with said, the donkeys, and such,were more skittish.They would alert to predators before the cows or horses would know they were there.Is this true?There has been a big market for small burrows and donkeys here lately.That may make it feasible to buy acreage,other than to just have a boundary between neighbors.
 
Bryant RedHawk
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Burrows, Donkeys and Mules do indeed function as guard animals.
Not only will they raise a ruckus when predators such as coyotes come a calling but they will dispatch said predators with a well placed hoof kick.
They get along well with just about any animal you need protected, including horses, cattle, goats, pigs and sheep.
They eat about the same amount per day as a horse.

The use of these animals as guard animals has an extremely long history (as in BC, not AD).

We have a donkey that we are trying to invite to come live with us right now.
The owner has abandoned the animal and turned her out to fend for herself.
Since I will not allow any domesticated animal to not have a safe home, I am going to invite this donkey to come live on Buzzard's Roost Farm.
We have to buy hay and straw anyway and I like donkeys as much as I like horses so it is going to be good if she decides to come to live with us.
I even have a grand spot for her house and she will have plenty to eat and others for friendship.
 
Ben Mosley
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Location: Upstate,SC Zone 7a
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Thanks for confirming what I was told.I prefer the smaller donkeys.I hope you get that one.It sounds like it needs a good home.
 
Su Ba
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Prior to getting my donkey (a Hawaiian Nightengale), I would lose sheep to stray dogs. I've lost over a dozen so far. Since the donkey was integrated into the flock, I haven't lost any more stock even though I've found evidence of dogs digging under the fencing. But I have found one dead dog carcass. And neighbors have reported seeing the donkey trying to rundown a dog in the pasture, cornering it, and throwing it over the fence (most likely totally accidental) by grabbing it up in the teeth and shaking it. The donkey was probably trying to kill the dog, who was lucky to escape when slung.

 
William Bronson
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That's it! I am getting me a burro!
Seriously though,I love such a self reliant animal that still partner with us. Also, donkey milk cheese may be the rarest of all....😆

http://www.bbc.com/travel/story/20160720-a-cheese-made-from-donkey-milk
 
Bryant RedHawk
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We have a coyote pack that used to sound off every night before they went on the hunt. I have not heard them for over a month and a half now. (their normal cycle was to leave our area for 2 weeks then circle back through for two weeks)
We used to have stray dogs come up on our land too, haven't seen one in the two and a half months donkey donk has been on our property full time.

She has chased around our leopard dog and the new pit bull but they run away (it seems to be a game between the three of them since no injuries have occurred).
I have seen a video of a Standard Donkey being attacked by three coyotes, the coyotes lost in the video two were killed by a bite to the back of the neck and the third was kicked so hard you could see the hoof breaking the rib cage.

Our new donkey seems to be ok with our two dogs, apparently the three of them make up the herd in the donkey's mind.
I say that because I see them all go nose to nose and the dogs will lick the donkey where the horse flies have bitten her muzzle to stop the blood flow.
The donkey really wants to be in a fenced in area and I suspect I will be doing that in the future, she already has her own stall completed so she doesn't have to stand out in the rain anymore.
She eats the open pasture grasses and gets a morning carrot, in the evening she gets a carrot and 2 cups of corn chops. She comes with the dogs when I whistle for them to come, she loves being brushed and if I go anywhere I have a pit bull and a donkey right behind me.

I doubt I will ever try to use her for a beast of burden, since I know she was an abused and starved animal I am just fine with a pet donkey that likes to guard the chickens against raccoons and other predator critters we have around.

Redhawk
 
Todd Parr
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I'm still in the decision-making process with regards to this.  I personally really like donkeys and mules, but my lady insists she would rather have an alpaca or a llama as a guard animal.  We are still looking for the larger area of land we will purchase, so the decision isn't pressing, but does anyone have any input with regards to their personal preference and why?  I'm very much an animal person, so I'm sure I would be happy adding any of these animals to our rag-tag bunch.
 
Ben Mosley
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Todd Parr wrote:I'm still in the decision-making process with regards to this.  I personally really like donkeys and mules, but my lady insists she would rather have an alpaca or a llama as a guard animal.  We are still looking for the larger area of land we will purchase, so the decision isn't pressing, but does anyone have any input with regards to their personal preference and why?  I'm very much an animal person, so I'm sure I would be happy adding any of these animals to our rag-tag bunch.


I don't like alpaca or llama. They have a tendency to spit at me. Nasty creatures. I'll take a nice ass any day. ROFL!
 
Bryant RedHawk
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In my case the donkey was a perfect choice, and has only cost me the materials I bought to build her stall and a bag of corn chops every two weeks.

I looked into Alpaca farming a year ago and decided against trying to build a herd because of the expense of purchasing good breeding stock. (really good, registered breeding stock can cost as much as 15,000 per animal)
You also need a pretty good herd of these animals to make money from shearing, and the same amount of pasture as a cow requires.
The logistics for us just didn't make a lot of sense.

Redhawk
 
s. ayalp
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Two more reasons;
First donkeys choose their path in the most energy conservative way. I don't know who observed this first since it should be centuries old. First you lead a donkey to carry load between two villages, each with the same crossings with various paths etc (like a stream or over a hill). Then you let the donkey to make the decision which path it should take. It chooses the "best" path. Now you can build roads for wheel charts etc. It will be the easiest and cheapest to build.

Second one is inherently cruel I think. When Syrian war begun I was wondering how people were able to cross the border (Turkey- Syria) so easily, not even making to the news. You see, there is a huge minefield along the border. Turkey decided to clean all of its minefields according to Ottawa Treaty but it is so complicated it was delayed many times. Well they were letting the donkey to take the lead and everyone was following the "clean" path. When something gone wrong, "we need another donkey over here!". Not a joke btw.
 
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