Spanish Goats
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About Spanish GoatsAbout Spanish Goats



Spanish Goats, also calledrnbrush goats or scrub goats, came originally from Spain via Mexico to the USA. Theyrnare now a meat and brush-clearing type found widely in the United States. Inrnthe Southeast and elsewhere, they are often referred to as "wood"rn(Florida), "brush" or "briar" (North Carolina, SouthrnCarolina), "hill" (Virginia), and "scrub" (midwestrnPennsylvania) goats. Until recently, these goats were kept mainly for clearingrnbrush and other undesirable plant species from pasture lands.

rnrnAround the 16th century,rnSpanish explorers brought landrace goats from their native lands to thernCaribbean Islands and areas that would later become the United States andrnMexico. Some landrace Spanish goats exist in their native territory of Spainrnbut survive through the bloodlines brought to the New World.

rnrnSpanish goats are hardy and canrnthrive in difficult environments. Pure Spanish goats have been crossbred withrnimported goat breeds for cashmere and meat production.

rnrnThe Spanish goat has thernability to breed out of season, and is an excellent range animal because of itsrnsmall udder and teats. In addition, Spanish goats are very hardy, able tornsurvive and thrive under adverse conditions, with only limited managementrninputs. Within the general group of what are called "Spanish goats,"rnthere are those that are purely of Spanish origins, but the term has been usedrnto represent an amalgam of all genotypes introduced to the area. There havernbeen obvious infusions of dairy and Angora blood in many "Spanish"rnherds, but no organized attempt has ever been made to use them for milk orrnmohair production.

rnrnIn recent years, the escalatingrndemand for goat meat has focused research into the qualities of the Spanishrngoat as a meat goat. Spanish goats have shown excellent hardiness and havernshown themselves to be a low-input goat compared to other meat breeds. SeveralrnSpanish goat producers in Texas have been intensively selecting for increasedrnmeat production for the past several years. From information obtained fromrnthese producers, these "selected" Spanish goats appear to greatlyrnoutperform the ordinary Spanish goat used primarily for pasture maintenance.

rnrnWhen Boer goats were introducedrninto the United States from South Africa in the 1990s, many producers switchedrnfrom raising Spanish goats to raising Boer or Boer crosses, which greatlyrnreduced the population of Spanish goats. In 2009, there were approximatelyrn8,500 purebred Spanish goats nationwide.

Spanish Goats Associations


International Dairy Goat Registry - International Fiber Breed Registry - www.idgr-ifbr.com


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