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Hi all, I just got started with our boer goats this winter. Had our first babies in June, and I'm hooked. We're keeping three girls to grow the herd, and the one unfortunate boy is freezer-bound.

I am now looking towards fall breeding, and what with the cost of getting the does tested (I purchased them from a CAE/Johne's-free herd, so I'm good with that, but understandably, the buck's owner wants new papers) and the breeding fees, my hubby now sees that I could actually just buy a buck for almost the same cost.

Our purpose with these goats is to put meat in our own freezer. I also think that we could use a boer buck to breed our nubians, which would put milk in the fridge.

My goats are all registered, and I think I'd like to continue with that in case we ever decide to sell some, but I don't want to buy a pricier buck than we actually need. What are the essential things I need to look for? Should I care whether the teat structure is 2x2 or 1x1? Do I want an older buck that has been breeding for a couple of years? Help with any advice, please ...
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
And what exactly is the difference in "purebred" and "fullblood"?
 

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Full-blood is usually bred up from non-breed animals, whereas pure bred is born of 2 parents of that same breed. For example, if I were to breed a 100% Kiko buck to a 100% Kiko doe, I would have a purebred Kiko kid. However, if I were to breed a 100% Kiko buck to a 100% Nubian doe I would have a 50% Kiko/50% Nubian kid. If I then bred that kid to a 100% Kiko buck I would have a 3/4 Kiko/1/4 Nubian kid. Another breeding of the same type would result in a 7/8's kid, and the last breeding would result in a full-blood Kiko kid. At least, that is how I understand it to work.
 

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I am now looking towards fall breeding, and what with the cost of getting the does tested (I purchased them from a CAE/Johne's-free herd, so I'm good with that, but understandably, the buck's owner wants new papers) and the breeding fees, my hubby now sees that I could actually just buy a buck for almost the same cost.

Our purpose with these goats is to put meat in our own freezer. I also think that we could use a boer buck to breed our nubians, which would put milk in the fridge.

My goats are all registered, and I think I'd like to continue with that in case we ever decide to sell some, but I don't want to buy a pricier buck than we actually need. What are the essential things I need to look for? Should I care whether the teat structure is 2x2 or 1x1? Do I want an older buck that has been breeding for a couple of years? Help with any advice, please ...
Maybe, maybe not with the cost of buying a buck. You also have to consider feed costs, the cost of building a pen that is strong enough to hold a buck, and the fact that he is going to breed your 3 girls in a month and you will have to deal with him for the other 11 months of the year. Bucks stink, they can be temperamental, and they can also be very destructive.

Personally, I would care about the teat structure. It can be very confusing for a newborn kid, and can be the difference between life and death if the kid is born during the winter months. There is also the fact that a lot of people care about teat structure so it can also be a factor come re-selling time. From where I'm standing, it is just as easy to breed for correct teat structure and it is for non-correct teat structure.

As far as an older buck goes, there are advantages and disadvantages to both. Number one disadvantage for an older buck is that he can bring disease into your herd. Number one advantage for an older buck is that he is proven and you will know what you're getting as far as previous kids go. That is something you are going to have to weigh out and decide for yourself. Personally, I would never buy a buck that had been used to breed other does. It just isn't worth the risk to me, but I also have a much larger herd than you do. I hope I've given you some food for thought, and perhaps helped a little. Good luck with your herd and I wish you the best. :)
 

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With boers full blood and pure blood are opposite of what was described above. Full blood means both parents are 100% boer. Pure blood means at some point there was influence from another breed or an unregistered animal is in the history somewhere. A percentage boer reaches pure blood status at 94% for boer does and 97% for bucks. No matter how many generations you breed up they will never reach full blood status. Even 99.9 % is still a pure bred animal.
 

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Bucks can and do breed early. 5 to 6 months old they are capable of settling does. Teat structure should be 1x1 or 2x2 clean with good spacing. Look at the ABGA website for DQ's and breed standards.

My goals and primary purpose are different than yours, but may help and give you a little insight. I raise market wethers, replacement does, show does and one or two prospect bucklings. Also, a kid or two for freezer camp. Half the does are FB, the rest are % does and unregistered does. Right now, I have culled and sold down to 13 does and 2 prospect bucks. But, I buy good goats at sales and from individuals when I see something I can't live without.

The 2 bucks have very few common relatives with each other and my does. Both are 2x2 clean teated with a lot of spacing. Both are completely show correct, bite, pigment, ears, testicles, etc.....They each have numerous ennoblements on their papers. One has 13 the other 9(i think?). They are both different "styles" of bucks. One is a very long, tall, heavy boned, fast growing son of Bo Jangles. The other is a wide, thick, level, heavy boned, medium growth son of One Tuff Rip. Both are big babies, but easily bend and tear up 4 gauge panels, feeders, hay racks, water buckets, etc.... when they feel the need to destory something.

When bucks are in rut, which can happen more than once a year and last for awhile, they are crazy eyed, tongue out, pizzle out, stinky wild animals. They "perfume" themselves and their surroundings around the clock with urine.

My bucks are penned most of the time hopefully. This is more difficult then it sounds. What they can't go over, they will go under. If they can't go over it or under it, they will try to go through it head first. A buck has no respect for hot wire. A 200lb-300lb buck can do a lot of damage. Think along the lines of containing a buffalo.

You also have to feed and clean up after this penned wild animal.....

Not sure about having them cover your nubians. "Normal" weight for a good boer kid is close to 10lbs. Some bigger. I had does drop twins that were 13lbs+ and one had twin 14lbs. Also had serveral sets of trips that averaged over 11lbs.

Most bucks will require a strong, heavy duty pinch collar in order to make them do something you want them to do. No matter how sweet and gentle you think a buck is, never, NEVER turn your back to them. A buck demands respect and you have to make them respect you.
 

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as for the teat structure...if you plan on using him for your Nubian...1x1 is best and coming from a 1x1 parentage... Split teat, spur teats ect..are undesirable in dairy..its best not to breed that into you dairy herd...

When purchasing you buck get the best you can afford..and some...your buck is 50% of your herd...if he has flaws he can pass this to the offspring..you want a buck that can improve on the ladies..so if yo have a doe who has weak attachment of her udder..you want a buck whose mom has awesome attachment..so baby will have a better udder than mom....I dont know much on conformation but I do know you want good teats, well attached udder (even for meat goats!!) strong straight legs for a firm foundation...ALWAYS check for lumps and bumps, you want him to be bright eye, alert, well conditioned, good coat, deep pink to red eye lids..nice horns..no peeling badly or loose..go visit Boer goat web sites of great stock and see what they have as a buck..try to get that look in yours...he doesn't have to have champion blood lines..Ive seen some pretty awesome run of the mill bucks that could put a champion to shame so don't pass one by because of pedigree..look for the qualities you want..qualities your does need...and one more note: you should be able to walk up to him and lead him any where with out much effort..easy to handle..best wishes!!!
 

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You are going to need to check teat structure of the buck. Make sure he is clean; 1:1 or 2:2.
This is not to say you will get clean teats on every kid.
Of wethers (Boer over 50% Nubian) one has 3 teats.
This was by a clean two teated buck, however the 1:1 dam's sire was 2:2.
As for newborns & the 2:2 it has been my experience that they always find the working teats if the extras don't have orifices.
 

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Here's something to be aware of. Some bucks are "destructive" & some not.
There's also the question of handle ability.
It has to do with temperament as well as how the owners have handled him.
So far I have purchased only two over the years.
At 4 yrs old, RNSH Auto Repeater was well behaved, knew what "GET BACK!" meant and I almost didn't need a collar on him to move him.
He was easier to handle than some of my does!
If you visit a prospective buck and the owners have trouble handling him you can bet you will too.
This is my first year with RNSH One Four Richie who we bought at 7 mos old. He's not quite the big baby Auto was, but he paid for himself his first kidding season.;)
 

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Also be careful with the buck and the babies, I had three bucks this spring and turned them out with the does a month after kidding and lost two bucklings in an hour, It just depends on the buck, My other two try to protect the babies but the other buck is the biggest and meanest! It is safe to assume he is no longer with us, or anyone for that matter!
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Thank you, everyone! So, tell me this - am I crazy if I think that I can bring home a 6 to 8 month old buckling, spend lots of time loving on him, and expect him to stay sweet? I had thoughts of teaching him to walk on a lead, and making it all an easy, although smelly, walk in the park. (Well, maybe not THAT simple...)
 

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Thank you, everyone! So, tell me this - am I crazy if I think that I can bring home a 6 to 8 month old buckling, spend lots of time loving on him, and expect him to stay sweet? I had thoughts of teaching him to walk on a lead, and making it all an easy, although smelly, walk in the park. (Well, maybe not THAT simple...)
No, it's not crazy, but they do grow and they can change. Some people don't recommend making too big a pet out of bucks. I'll leave it at that. You haven't said how much you can spend. There are some excellent Boer breeders in Western Oregon. Some have young bucks that have been handled a lot. Possibly even shown. Sometimes you can buy a very nice buck that just plain worked himself out of a job at the farm where he lives. The owners have kept several daughters and it's time to change bucks. There is nothing wrong with the buck and they would be perfect for a start up program and can often be had at a reasonable price. Just a thought.
 

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I agree, you can make them sweet and well mannered, but they can definitely change, especially at breeding time.

We had a 3yo buck that was not tame, took 3 people to catch him at his former home.
Animal crackers, and baby talk, and he became very friendly considering how unfriendly he was when we got him. I did have to restrain him to do feet/shots/worming but it was usually not too bad as long as he had food in front of him lol

2nd buck we owned was a young guy when we got him, he was shown and thought he needed to be permanently attached to us at the hip LOL He was a good boy. When he was about 14mo he started to get a little bratty, but it wasn't bad. I think there are only 2x I ever had an issue with him. Once, he thought he was going to take me on because he was on the muck pile. Not trying to hurt me, just trying to bully me. I climbed on the muck pile with a big stick, whacked him across the horns, and he ran off with his tail between his legs! That ended that.
Second and last time was when he was in rut & we had them loose in the front yard. He was trying to come over to where we didn't want him, and he thought he was going to put his horns down at me when I was trying to move him.
He moved, trust me, he moved and I didn't need a stick to do it.

So you just have to be ready for them to be bratty IMO.

We just got a new buck earlier this month who is 16mo, and so far he is very very laid back. He was never shown, was on pasture, but is lead trained. This is his first breeding season, and so far he's been fine. I can move him, push him, whatever without a fuss lol He's learning the ropes and what voice commands mean <like the Spanish word I use for 'move it!' lol>.
I think so far the only thing he's even done that would be a no-no is try to jump the barn door thinking he wasn't getting fed LOL Silly boy! It was actually kind of funny, not even the does have done that lol

So the boys can be fun. Just make sure you can find something to get the smell off with.
Also, learn to be firm with them. Never give a buck an inch, because they'll really take a couple of miles! But reward them when they are being good. I baby talk our big guy, he seems to understand my mood when I do that :)
 
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