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 a regular 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
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.