About Arapawa Goats
|Photo taken on Arapawa Island by Michael Trotter in 1978|
The Arapawa Goat is one
of the rarest goat breeds in the world and is critically close to extinction.
The Arapawa Goat is a breed of feral goat descended from Old English milch goats released on Arapawa Island off the coast of New Zealand. It is directly descended from a breed of English landrace goat which no longer exists in its native England. Extremely rare today, a few have been exported to North America and other regions. These goats were originally put on Arapawa by the inhabitants of the bay named Te AwaIti Whaling Station in the early 1800s.
In the 1970s the New Zealand Government’s Forest Service’s priority on Arapawa Island became the protection of the native fauna and flora on Arapawa Island’s reserve, and started to perform aregular culling of the goats. This lead almost to the eradication of the goats. It was only through the dedication of Betty Rowe, a resident of Arapawa Island, that some survived.
In 2004 six goats were brought from Arapawa Island to the UK to preserve the bloodline. Also many goats live today in a sanctuary set up on the island.
From the original six goats brought to the UK there are now herds being built up around the country. In 2009 the first Arapawa Goat doe was brought to Mid Wales and in 2010 the first Arapawa buck arrived.