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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Are blue eyes in goats a generally desirable trait or undesirable? Does eye color hold any importance or significance as far as goat health?
 

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As far as desirability - it depends on the breed you are asking about. In some breeds it is a DQ - disqualification. In others, people tend to like the color. It has no importance to goat health.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
As far as desirability - it depends on the breed you are asking about. In some breeds it is a DQ - disqualification. In others, people tend to like the color. It has no importance to goat health.
Specifically Nigerian Dwarf...Would it be a desirable trait in their offspring? Is it completely neutral? I ask because although I realize the gene is dominant, most goats have brown eyes, even NDs. Does this mean that people avoid producing blue-eyed NDs?
 

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In my area, ND's with blue eyes sell for more and it's a very desirable treat, As for health blue eye "Can be weaker" but I don't raise them so I couldn't say.
 

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Where I am people always act like blue eyes are the best, and they tend to ask more for goats with the trait. I'd ask around the goat owners in your area and see whether it is something they value.

I think it is funny that people act like blue eyes are rare or something, because actually blue eyes are the dominant trait.
 

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Blue eyes and moon spots are the rage right now. So. People are breeding for those things... instead of good udders and confirmation. So in essence they are doing a huge disservice to the breed varieties simply to get a pretty goat imo. You cannot milk blue eyes and moonspots is what a wise person told me long ago. So do not look for the flashy goat!

Do i have blue eyes in my herd... yes. Do i have some simply moonspotted.... yes. However... crazy as it may seem... i did not realize either my buck or doe had blue eyes until AFTER i got them home lol! Yes absolutely i looked at famacha but i was not payin attention to eye color so didnt even notice it. I did notice moonspots but i was lookin at udder and confirmation when i went for my goats not for pretty and spotted.. and believe me that i had look way below the pretty spots on one of the bucks to see what i needed see. He was very mineral and copper deficient. Had they not had the things that i wanted the eye color and spots would not have made me buy them. I want my girls to stand up to the test of time not beauty.
 

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Around here people like blue eyes more. I don’t know that they sell for more, but it’s definitely a desirable trait. Blue eyes are more sensitive to light than brown. The sun can damage them over time
 

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Blue eye Nigies are more desirable here as well..some sell them for more just because of blue eyes. I have both blue eye and brown eye Nigerians...The blue is striking, especially on my chocolate brown doe. I don't find one to be less healthy then the other
 

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It depends on your market and goals.

Blue eyes typically sell well as pets or family milkers.

Some show breeders detest blue eyes. Heck, some pet people do too.

I have both in my herd and sometimes they sell fast and other times people cringe and pass on them. I had a hard time selling blue eyed kids last year.

They hold no other value other then what the BREEDER likes and what the CUSTOMER wants.

I breed for milk production, ease of milking and show. I could care less what color the eyes are at the end of the day. I do really enjoy my flashy, blue eyed goats but if they don't hold their own in all other aspects they don't stay.

Purely cosmetic preferences without any health issues attached to them.
 

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I agree. Often people want blue eyes, and moon spots too.

Now, I'll be honest here. I am expecting some blue-eyed(and possibly moon spotted kids) in just a few weeks. I bred them specifically with the intent to hopefully get blue eyes. Why? Because they sell for sooo much more here. Earlier this year I had two, 8 weeks old 50/50 boer nubian kids. I ended up rehoming them for $30ea at 15 weeks old. I spent probably twice that amount in care and feed on them. They were that price for over 3 weeks before I pretty much had to beg someone to take them. Meanwhile, I had seen a BoerxF1 mini Nubian. That kid looks almost exactly like mine(black traditional boer color) expect he had blue eyes. He was only 8 weeks old and sold in less than 2 days for $125 Neither parent was registered and he really wasn't anything special(other than being very flashy) These ones having possible blue-eyed kids are all minis. One is a FF(bucks from FF here are wethered and does keep for evaluation) one has a bad udder(bucks wethered, does keep for evaluation) and one was not supposed to be bred as she is a better quality doe but its not the end of the world as the buck is not horrible quality and I don't believe he will downgrade her kids in any way at all. So the short story is that they are all for pets, or to be kept by me until further notice for evaluation. I would like to at least cut even this/next year and MAYBE just maybe have the goats at least pay for their feed. My bigger does, on the other hand, are being bred for the production of meat/milk. Color of eyes and fur is MUCH less of a concern for me.

You cannot milk blue eyes and moonspots
:nod:

Anyways, to answer the OPs question.
No. Having blue eyes vs brown does not make one goat less healthy than the other.

It depends on what you want. If you are breeding for show or production, there are some great producing and conformation goats with blue eyes, but there is more without blue eyes and usually a little bit cheaper. If you are breeding for pets and/or backyard production animals, I would probably go with more "flashy" goats as they will probably make more than the less flashy pets/production animals.
 

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Okay I have to ask this because I think the OP's question has been answered. Why are they called "moon" spots. What makes them any different than normal spots?
 

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Okay I have to ask this because I think the OP's question has been answered. Why are they called "moon" spots. What makes them any different than normal spots?
A normal spot would be a blotch of white on a colored coat or a leftover spot of color in a white patch. A moon spot is color on color. They usually lighten in color with age. I don't know why they're specifically called that though.
 

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Because they look just like the spots on the moon! :p

Blue eyes and moonspots are popular here too. I try to look past them, but I won't say that I've never bought a goat just because of the moonspots. (In my defense, it was only once, and she was my second goat, before I was well-versed on conformation anyway.)
Now, I raise Nigerians. Half of the kids will be boys, which will be wethered. And even most of the girls are sold just as pets (just seems to be the market here.) So it never hurts to have that little bit of extra flash when selling to pet homes. But I'm sure not going to leave a subpar buckling intact just so I can sell it as a blue-eyed, moonspotted buck.

That said, I do have a breeding this year that could potentially produce blue-eyed, polled, moonspotted kids. And I'm pretty excited about that one. But I'm more excited about a different breeding, that is guaranteed to NOT have moonspots, blue eyes, OR polled, but will condense some really good genetics and should produce kids with beautiful conformation and udders.
 

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Around here blue eyes sell much easier. Our market is primarily pets and family milkers. A year ago, my goal was to have a nice blue eyed, moonspotted, polled buck. Now my goals have changed as I’ve learned more. We now are looking at doing what we can to breed goats with proper conformation that can improve the breed. Color doesn’t matter, we want the most structurally sound goats with good udders, production, and temperament. Eventually we would like to show (once our human kids are older), so we’re doing what we can to set ourselves up for success.
 

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Just to clarify: Blue is the genetically dominant color for goat eyes, BUT that gene is less common than the recessive yellow/brown eye color. Just because a gene is dominant doesn't mean it is common. It just means when a goat has that gene, that is the trait they will express.
 

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Just to clarify: Blue is the genetically dominant color for goat eyes, BUT that gene is less common than the recessive yellow/brown eye color. Just because a gene is dominant doesn't mean it is common. It just means when a goat has that gene, that is the trait they will express.
So the other way around than among humans, then?
 

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Taken from ScienceDaily.com

The laws of genetics state that eye color is inherited as follows:

  1. If both parents have blue eyes, the children will have blue eyes.
  2. The brown eye form of the eye color gene (or allele) is dominant, whereas the blue eye allele is recessive.
  3. If both parents have brown eyes yet carry the allele for blue eyes, a quarter of the children will have blue eyes, and three quarters will have brown eyes.
So in short yes it is the other way around.
 

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What MellonFriend said!
 
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