A non-profit initiative of the Permaculture Education Institute & Morag Gamble

Our Goat Keeping System

by | April 08, 2021 | Permayouth

Hello 🙂

When I started researching goats, the first thing I did was to check out Bill Mollison’s Permaculture Manual.

I read the section on goats and I found a not-very-positive view. There was a lot about how destructive and unsuitable they are in permaculture but not what I could do to design my own system.

But after several weeks of hardcore research online, I came to the conclusion that goats are only destructive if you allow them to use that part of their nature that causes them to destroy and become an absolute nuisance.

I bought a book on small space goats (Backyard Dairy Goats – look it up if you’re interested) – this really inspired me to get my three Nigerian Dwarf/Australian Miniature crosses.

We set up a pen, a barn, and about six months after I told my parents we should get goats, we picked up three adorable triplet kids.

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So, here’s a look at our system, and how I attempt to stop them being destructive.Their house is a second hand cubby that we bough on Gumtree where they have a small pen with lots of toys for them to play with.Goats need entertainment or they get antsy. I lock the goats up in their cubby every night to keep them safe from wild dogs.

They also have a 1/6 of an acre of paddock, which they can browse in during the day.

For an hour every afternoon, I let them roam over our property which has pluses and minuses. For example: they get to be free and choose more specific things to eat, but they also choose to eat things from our food forest, or mum’s special olive tree…

The goats at the end of every season are allowed to go into my garden and chomp up last season’s plants, while I prep the garden for its new crops.

Thank you for reading, I hope you enjoyed this article!
If you have any questions or thoughts on keeping goats, please let me know, I’d love to hear from you!

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