Define "Browse"

Discussion in 'Goat Management' started by dixiegirl3179, Dec 11, 2010.

  1. dixiegirl3179

    dixiegirl3179 Done lost her mind...

    291
    Jan 20, 2010
    Middleburg, FL
    Hey all...

    My pen sat empty for several months (May-October) and got really overgrown. Now that I have the goats in there again they're working on eating it down, but I was wondering how I would know if what I have is good enough browse. I haven't been giving any hay because there is so much stuff in the pen for them to eat. It's mostly this really tall "grass" looking stuff that when it's cut and/or dried it looks just like grass hay. There's also some vines and other bushy brush in there (you can't really see it in the pictures since it's in the back and hidden by the tall grass). Also these really tall weeds that I've been told are called dog fennel. Everything is turning brown now because it's gotten cold. They've only been in the pen a few weeks and they've already made a bunch of progress. They do get some grain once a day but not much (about 1.5 to 2, 3qt scoops between the 7 of them). The 4 older does are possibly pregnant and due in March because they were housed with a buck while we got the fence up. Anyway I guess I'm just wondering if this is good enough. Everybody seems to be at a good healthy weight, nobody looks skinny by any means. I've included some pictures of my pen. Thanks ya'll.
     

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  2. liz

    liz Well-Known Member

    Oct 5, 2007
    Shelocta PA
    They'll certainly clean it up but "browse" is normally green leafy brush, you may need to add hay to their diet to maintain their weights and up the grain for the does to be sure they are getting what they need.
     

  3. toth boer goats

    toth boer goats Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Jul 20, 2008
    Corning California
    I totally agree with Liz.... :wink: :thumb:
     
  4. dixiegirl3179

    dixiegirl3179 Done lost her mind...

    291
    Jan 20, 2010
    Middleburg, FL
    Thanks for the replies. I was thinking the same thing, which is why I posted. A few weeks ago that stuff was all green, but it's dying off now because of the winter. I'm glad that it's dying off because at one point it was so thick I was afraid to walk out there. Along the fence line was just as thick as the back before we put the goats in there. They've eaten and stomped it down that much in just a few weeks. I'm going to be looking into a different way of feeding the grain too because right now I'm just pouring it into a couple of feeders and they're all sharing it. Some are getting more than others. I took the nubian babies out and made them their own stall because the mini goats weren't letting them eat, plus they aren't tame and they're getting dehorned soon so I need to be able to access them for aftercare. Sigh..I hate to buy hay when they are constantly eating all that stuff out there, but if they need it I guess I'll have to.