We've got a small herd of Nubian milk goats and are working to minimize outside inputs. We do feed alfalfa and sprouted barley but are able to cut down on those feeds with things we grow here.
In summer they get a huge variety of weeds! They grow in the garden beds and we chop them down and let them come up again several times. Sowthistle, Prickly lettuce, amaranth, lambsquarters, mallow, primrose, chicory, prostate knotweed, dandelion, dock and lots of other goodies. They are high in minerals and nutrition. They also get lots of kale( they need iodine supplement if you feed too much brassicas), chard and other cultivated greens. When there is an excess and the weather is dry, I harvest weeds and kale and nettles and spread them out on a sheet to dry, then bag them for winter. They love their super greens in winter time! Just a handful in their grain dish at milking time.
I've also dried gallons of zucchini and it is their favourite winter treat. Cookies! They like them fresh in summer too. They get all of the winter squash that did not mature and I grow lots of extra for them that I store and cut up for winter feed.
We grow mangel beets, carrots and rutabagas for them. At our last farm, we stored them in the root cellar because we had gophers gorging on them if we left them in the ground. But here we can leave them in the ground, mulched, for less work. Before we moved we were growing and storing an extra 1000 pounds of root crops for our herd of about 7-10 goats. We're working to get more happening here at our new place.
We grow lots of sunflowers in summer and feed the heads- broken up a bit- green to the animals. Jerusalem artichokes and yacon leaves are good. I am experimenting with forage chicory and they love it. It has been shown to be antiparasitical. We are creating a pasture with all of their favourite weeds and forage chicory will play a big part in this. I am pleased to see that the chicory from last year is already 6 inches tall and it has been a cold winter here, still getting down into the single digits.
Comfrey is a great protein crop for goats. They say you can grow something like 9 tons per acre!
I als let them browse in the wild and bring home for them, mtn mahogany, willow, live oak, ceanothus red root, pinon....
The more selection, the better IMO.
I'm sure there's more but that's all I can remember for now.