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BREED STANDARDS OR MUTTS?

 
                                
Posts: 19
Location: 5a, cool humid, 34"rf,
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just wanted to see how other peraculturists think about what type of animal/ livestock is prefered in a permaculture setting, purebred stock or crossbred stock, or continually crossbreeding stock?
 
Brice Moss
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like all permaculture questions

it depends

I'm shifting my goats to purebred stock now that I know I like having goats that'll make my babies for sale more valuable while eating the same amount of food, I started with cheep unregistered stock though and they made good milk too
 
T. Pierce
Posts: 254
Location: Virginia
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crossbred onlly  if its a two way cross.  but any more than that. pure for me. 
 
                                
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i started 12 years ago with 6 nubian does and buck. tried milking and knew that wasent for me. they had to be wormed every month and when they had kids they would just flop to the ground and would barely try to suckle.I switched to meat breeds and have cross bred my does with boer, kiko, crosses and now have a savaannah buck. My goats are PURE mutts. this is the first year ALL kids have survived and done very well. I also started out pampering those kids all i could. now mama does it all, no help.
But oppossingly i bought 3 purebred guinie hogs and theyre just right for me
 
Walter Jeffries
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It varies.

On our chickens I buy pure bred hens and roosters but then I let those cross, using the best roosters.

On our pigs we've been selectively breeding them for over a dozen pig generations to get what we want, to improve our herds. We have a lot of pigs (typically about 300 on farm) so I have a significant population base to work with. This is our cash crop and I improve the genetics through selective breeding.

Our livestock herding and guardian dogs are also a mix and also carefully selectively bred - much longer term project as we don't have litters very often.

I do not "do heritage" breeds for the purpose of maintaining a breed. I selectively breed for the purpose of maximizing the functionality of the plant or animal in our environment and to fit our needs.
 
Tyler Ludens
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pubwvj, do you plan to name your pig breed once you get it to the characteristics you want to propagate?

Personally I purchase "heritage" breeds of chickens because I want to encourage the breeders to continue those lines, but here at home I let the chickens mix, hoping eventually to arrive at something that does well for me in a relatively unmanaged situation.  I would like good foragers,good mothers, and relatively quiet.
 
Walter Jeffries
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I don't have a name for the pigs or dogs - the two animals we've been working at hard selective breeding for a long time. Maybe someday but that sort of thing is very much in the future. Your chicken criteria is much like ours. For us their primary job is organic pest control. I need them to do their job with minimal work on my part and they're very good at it. Each year or so I try a new heritage breed to see if I like the characteristics and then if I do I get a bunch the next year so they mix in with ours.
 
Kathleen Sanderson
Posts: 985
Location: Near Klamath Falls, Oregon
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Right now I'm doing a bit of both.  I've got a couple of registered Oberhasli goats and a couple that are part Oberhasli and part Alpine.  The babies from the registered doe and from the cross-bred does are all vigorous and healthy, and (possibly because of our climate) we only have to worm twice a year.  Although, if goats are having worm problems and unthrifty, weak babies, they may be short on a nutrient; often it's copper they are short on.

I've also got some 'pure-bred' chickens and some crosses.  I plan to continue a couple of pure lines (Golden-laced Wyandottes and Mille Fleur Leghorns), and also raise some crosses.  My rabbits are all 'mutts' -- as long as they produce meat, I don't care what breed they are.  My dog is a deliberate cross of English Shepherd and Collie, but I'm not breeding him.  Would love to have another dog of the same breeding and temperament when he's gone, though.

I think you just have to do what works for you.  If you can't find a breed that does what you want it to in your location, then develop one!  I happen to love Oberhaslis, and will probably eventually go to all registered stock.  I may eventually choose one of my chicken breeds and stick with that, working to improve them and develop my own strain of a pure breed.  Very likely, I'll be working with those Mille Fleur Leghorns, trying to improve their rate of lay while keeping their beautiful plumage (total free-range around here isn't very practical as we have long winters, so I'm not too worried about breeding them to be self-sufficient.  I'm willing to put some extra effort into feeding and caring for them, in exchange for better production). 

It gets too complicated to try to work seriously with too many breeds of one kind of animal.  I know a lot of people try it, raising a few of many different breeds, but if you are going to really make any progress towards improving (or better adapting) a breed, you need to be able to raise quite a few offspring and only pick the best few to breed from.  It's hard to do that if you have many different breeds.  Of course, your particular 'breed' may be your favorite 'mutt' or cross-breed -- perhaps in a few generations, it will have become another standardized breed!

Kathleen
 
Walter Jeffries
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One trick I figured out for having multiple pure breeds is alternating our roosters. I have hens who are NHRed, WO, BO, RIRed, Auracauna, etc. I then keep just a few roosters. From that year I know that out of certain hens I'll get purebred and others I'll get crosses. So far I haven't used this trick extensively but it is something one could do to have a large mixed free-ranging flock of hens but still to both mixed and pure lines.

You are very right about the few animal issue. With our ducks and geese we have way too few to do much breeding with. With our pigs we have had thousands of animals and hundreds of breeders so we get to play more with the genetic selection and have a noticeable effect. Likewise with the chickens we have a decent number to do this although I've not worked at it with them as much.
 
                  
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Location: South Carolina Zone 8
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For my chickens I breed mutts plain and simple because I get chickens because I like the way they look or something about that individual bird (they are pets and eggs are a bonus) so I have a mixed up flock and when I let a hen set there could be eggs from any hen under her. On top of that I have found some of my second and third generation non-descript mixed hens do better free range than the pure breed ones I started with. I also have a mutt hound and she is the best dog I have ever owned although I would have a purebred if it was to be a working dog (livestock or say coon or bird hunting) as they have a natural bred in tendency for the work. Currently aside from chickens, ducks and the dogs (the wife has a mixed Chihuahua Dachshund) as well as the wife's cats there are no other animals here. If I were to get others breed would depend on what I wanted them to do. For example if all I want is brush at a certain hight cleared I might go with pygmy goats, if I wanted it cleared higher simply larger goats, if I wanted milk however I would look at milk goat breeds same with meat. Pigs well as was mentioned we have been breeding them for hundreds of years for certain characteristics it would be any to choose a breed to match what I wanted same with cattle. Horses are another animal with certain breeds having natural tendencies and abilities geared towards certain activities for example you don't want mustangs for draft horses and you are not going to ride miniatures. That said for a riding horse a mixed breed is just fine and personality comes into play a lot more than specific breed however I have not been on a horse in more years than I care to say
 
Kathleen Sanderson
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Actually, it's not too hard to find mustangs that are suitable for draft animals -- when the tractor came into widespread use, a lot of draft and draft-cross horses were just turned out on the range, especially in eastern Washington and Oregon where they have the big dry-land wheat farms.  One of my friends a long time ago had a big bay mustang mare who was obviously part draft, probably Clydesdale.  A lot of the horses out of her herd were big (not so much tall as stout-built), big-boned, and had quite a bit of feathering on the legs.  I've also seen a mustang mare who I thought at first was purebred Arabian.

However, aside from the mustangs, your points were quite valid.

Kathleen
 
                  
Posts: 114
Location: South Carolina Zone 8
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Kathleen being in the Southeast the only mustangs I have seen were ones people had purchased or adopted from out west and they were a bit small to be a draft horse. I don't doubt since mustangs are basically feral horses like wild pigs are feral pigs there are some that look like pure bred or a mix I have just bever seen or heard of any till now. I guess you learn something new everyday
 
John Polk
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Interesting discussion.  I guess, like everything in permaculture, "it depends".
Mutts in any case, may not perform as well at any specific function as a breed that was designed specifically for that function, but they will still produce for you, and usually do so without all of the health issues that plague so many inbred species.  Maybe, the money you lose on egg production will be offset by not having to pay vet bills and medicines.
 
                                
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Location: 5a, cool humid, 34"rf,
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has anyone ever thought of breeding back livestock species to gain traits lost by contantly narrowing the gene pool by current breeding practices. i listened to a speech on this once and the results were amazing. I think this could be a great tool for permaculture and creating a sustainable future.
 
T. Pierce
Posts: 254
Location: Virginia
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there is a true breeder then there is someone who just throws a male species in with a female species and calls it breeding. 

a true breeder can and will use inbreeding, line breeding and on rare occasions outbreeding to carry on a line.  but even outbreeding is usually with in a recognized breed or species.  so the gene pool is still somewhat narrowed so that the offspring comes out somewhat predictable.  a true breeder is the one that you can count on to have the good lines  we can always count on.

then there is cross breeding.  when it is two or possibly three breeds or different lines that are bred together.  this usually produces a good production line of said type.  but this is no way to carry on a line of anything. 

shotgun breeding is the act of throwing this, that and the other together just to reproduce and make more of said species.  this may produce a healthy animal. but in no way does it produce something typical.  predictable. or able to reproduce itself ever again. 

different strokes for different folks.  but we all owe major kudos to the true breeder b/c when we need to, we can always go back to them  to get good strong predictable quality to start over with.
 
Walter Jeffries
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T. Pierce wrote:there is a true breeder then there is someone who just throws a male species in with a female species and calls it breeding.


This is why I differentiated between what we do with poultry (shotgun breeding) and what we do with pigs and dogs (very careful selective breeding). With the chickens the only selective force is those who survive well in our northern climate with little care and aren't too loud. With the chickens I'm just looking for organic pest control with the side benefit of eggs and meat. With the dogs and pigs I have very specific, and very different, goals. There is a place for each.
 
T. Pierce
Posts: 254
Location: Virginia
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pubwvj wrote:
This is why I differentiated between what we do with poultry (shotgun breeding) and what we do with pigs and dogs (very careful selective breeding). With the chickens the only selective force is those who survive well in our northern climate with little care and aren't too loud. With the chickens I'm just looking for organic pest control with the side benefit of eggs and meat. With the dogs and pigs I have very specific, and very different, goals. There is a place for each.


im curious about the "not too loud" part. youve posted that characteristic couple of times recently.  what do you mean exactly?  crowing? or is there more to it?
 
Walter Jeffries
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Crowing by roosters. If I have several roosters, which is typical, there will be some that crow more, louder and earlier. Those get picked, plucked and stewed. This is a selective force against loud crowing.
 
T. Pierce
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gotcha.  my wife would appreciate your method.  i just tell her,  "thats rooster music"
 
Tyler Ludens
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Some varieties of chickens just make more noise than others.  In my experience, Dark Cornish hens are very noisy, talking loudly most of the day in a raucous voice.
 
                                
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T. Pierce wrote:
there is a true breeder then there is someone who just throws a male species in with a female species and calls it breeding. 

a true breeder can and will use inbreeding, line breeding and on rare occasions outbreeding to carry on a line.  but even outbreeding is usually with in a recognized breed or species.  so the gene pool is still somewhat narrowed so that the offspring comes out somewhat predictable.  a true breeder is the one that you can count on to have the good lines  we can always count on. 


I dont think you understand. heres the dictionary term from wikipedia=" Breeding back can be described as either a natural or a human attempt to assemble or re-assemble the genes of an extinct species, subspecies or domesticated breed, which may still be present in the larger gene pool of the overall species or those of multiple interbreedable species.

Breeding back is controversial, especially claims that an extinct animal has been recreated. Similar appearance (phenotypical reconstruction) does not assure similar behavior or biology. For some of the animals that are being bred back, questions remain about the ecological niche, hardiness, and disease resistance of the original creatures. "

In another string  there was talk on a chicken breed and what you want of it in a permaculture ecology. I guess my point would be that  species could be bred back to a more 'basic' version of a species and then bred for the traits permies want. This intead of working with agrarian left- over varieties and working from there.
 
T. Pierce
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Location: Virginia
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hanjoil wrote:
I dont think you understand. heres the dictionary term from wikipedia=" Breeding back can be described as either a natural or a human attempt to assemble or re-assemble the genes of an extinct species, subspecies or domesticated breed, which may still be present in the larger gene pool of the overall species or those of multiple interbreedable species.

Breeding back is controversial, especially claims that an extinct animal has been recreated. Similar appearance (phenotypical reconstruction) does not assure similar behavior or biology. For some of the animals that are being bred back, questions remain about the ecological niche, hardiness, and disease resistance of the original creatures. "

In another string  there was talk on a chicken breed and what you want of it in a permaculture ecology. I guess my point would be that  species could be bred back to a more 'basic' version of a species and then bred for the traits permies want. This intead of working with agrarian left- over varieties and working from there.


you are correct.  i dont understand. 

if your referring to inbreeding being a contriversal subject than you are correct.  but any true breeder of any know type of animal that has recognizable strains or lines uses inbreeding.  no breed of dog, chicken, horse or any type of domestic animal has been created w/o some type of linebreeding. 

a good breeder can use linebreeding and create a stronger, healthier, more predictable, superior offspring than the original parent stock.  the trick is knowing your lines, and culling ruthlessly, and being willing to admit you took a wrong turn, and scrap the whole idea.  thank goodness alot of this has been done in previous decades, perhaps centuries.  all we have to do is continue to carry on said lines of animal, or fowl we are breeding.  but even this takes alot of knowledge and a bit of the over used term,,,,luck.

if this is no where near what your referring to, my apologies, but as mentioned i dont really follow what your referencing too.
 
                                
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breeding back has nothing to do with inbreeding but i can see how it can be confused, i have 'bred back daughters to their father. 'breeding back' is what wikipedia calls it. heres a look at an example.
Heck horse (colloquially Tarpan[1]) is a horse breed that resembles the extinct wild equine, the Tarpan, (Equus ferus ferus). The breed was created by the German zoologist brothers Heinz Heck and Lutz Heck, director of the Berlin Zoo, at the Tierpark Hellabrunn (Munich Zoo) in Germany in their attempt to breed back the tarpan. The first foal born from the program was a colt born on May 22, 1933 at the Tierpark Hellabrunn. [2][3]
The Hecks believed that they could recreate the extinct tarpan subspecies by back breeding living descendants. They believed that they could combine and rearrange the genetic material from these living descendants into a recreation of the extinct horse.[2]

The Heck brothers bred together several European small horse and pony breeds hypothesized to be descended from the tarpan. They used mares of the Konik, Icelandic horse, and Gotland breeds. These mares were bred to stallions of a wild horse type known as Przewalski's horse. The Hecks believed that the wild Przewalski blood would help to draw out the wild characteristics that they felt lay dormant in the domesticated pony breed mares.[2]

The first Heck horse, a stallion named Duke, was exported to the United States in 1954. He was imported by the Chicago Zoological Park in Illinois, followed by two mares in 1955. In 1962, a third mare was imported by the Fort Worth Zoological Park in Texas. All four horses came from the Munich Zoo and all Heck horses in the United States trace back to these animals. There are now several private breeders in the United States who use their horses for riding and light driving.[2] In the early 1960's, the North American Tarpan Association was founded by Heck horse enthusiasts to promote the breed.[4]


Several breeders have crossed the Heck horse with other breeds to get a larger horse with some of the primitive characteristics. Breeds that are commonly crossed with the Heck horse are the Welsh pony and Arabian horse, and a new breed of pony, called the Canadian rustic pony, has been developed from these three breeds. In Europe, many breeders cross Heck horses with Thoroughbreds to produce hunters.[2]

Heck horses are dun or grullo (a dun variant) in color, with no white markings. The breed has primitive markings, including a dorsal stripe and zebra markings on the legs. Heck horses generally stand between 12.2 and 13.2 hands (50 to 54 inches, 127 to 137 cm) tall. The head is large, the withers low, and the legs and hindquarters strong. The hooves are strong, often not needing shoeing. The gait of the Heck horse is high stepping, which makes them comfortable to ride and attractive when being driven.[5] The breed is described as being calm, friendly, curious and intelligent, although very independent.[2]

[edit] References1.^ "Main page". North American Tarpan Association. http://www.tarpanassociation.com/. Retrieved 2009-02-02. "Lost in the misty memory of Eastern Europe, the ancient Tarpan vanished so quietly that its passing was hardly noticed. Then, through the efforts and expertise of German Zoologist Heinz Heck, a new horse emerged from the grey haze of history, to remind us of the beauty of what we had lost. In the process, a unique little horse was created. The NATA's mandate is to preserve this Tarpan, to promote it's [sic] endearing traits of gentleness, strength and hardiness, and to protect it's [sic] complex and fascinating history."
2.^ a b c d e f "Tarpan, Breeds of Livestock". Oklahoma State University. http://www.ansi.okstate.edu/breeds/horses/tarpan/. Retrieved January 13, 2009.
3.^ "Equus ferus ferus". The Extinction Website. http://www.petermaas.nl/extinct/speciesinfo/tarpan.htm. Retrieved January 13, 2009.
4.^ About Us, North American Tarpan Association, accessed January 13, 2009.
5.^ Standard, North American Tarpan Association, accessed January 13, 2009.

Heck horse From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


 
                                
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sorry for the long cite but i think you will understand now. when you cross many breeds of the same species together their ancient roots soon start to show. in these roots are hardiness, characteristics and maybe even other uses for that species that may not be apparent in any breed, thats what im after. im after an animal that works well with a permie ecology, not against it. I am contantly on the lookout for the next breed of goat to introduce into my local ecology not to bring desired traits, confimation, or the latest breeder association tweek but to broaden my gene pool to increase the liklihood for animals that can adapt and make the best of that sorrounding.
 
T. Pierce
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Location: Virginia
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yes i do recall many yrs back reading about the HECK horse.  the details escape me but what you pasted does jog the ol memory some what.

IMO the experiment they went through was interesting but generally a huge waste of time and money.  now that they have created what they THINK was the prototype of an ancient horse. they are once again breeding it back into the modern horses.  hence it may be gone again in a short period of time once the handfull of enthusiasts have all passed away.

IMO they are just recreating the wheel.  and with this type of breeding it will take decades,  perhaps longer to get what your looking for, and in the end you'll be right back where you started.  a bunch of brush goats that are just that. scatterbred goats that are only good at eating and reproducing.  as sigfried farnon said ............"all horns and balls" 

dont take me wrong now.  i do respect what these gentlemen did to a degree......and i also respect what your doing,  but i personally dont see the point and i dont think we have that much time left before all this really wont matter much.  i would stick to the well bred breeds and cross them when i want something to really produce.  (im not nor have i ever bred goats to any degree) my experience is with dogs, fowl, rabbits.  but i did enjoy the your post and the lessons in it.
 
Brice Moss
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no need to breed back to a wild goat there still are populations
 
I agree. Here's the link: https://richsoil.com/wood-heat.jsp
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