The Rare Breed Survival Trust has five criteria for rare breed Goats, based upon how many registered breeding females (called nannies) are left. This criteria varies for each type of animal.
The Anglo Nubian Goat is not under threat and not classed as rare.
The Anglo Nubian Goat was created in the UK at the end of the Nineteenth Century. It was developed by crossing goats in England with those arriving on Ocean Liners from the East; the goats were used to provide fresh milk during the voyage.
Whilst not rare, the long hanging ears are only found on Anglo Nubian or Boer Goats and are unusual for children to see on a day out. The Anglo Nubian Goats are also renowned for creating the best tasting and highest quality goats milk.
On a day out to Odds Farm Park, children can identify the Anglo Nubian Goat by their height (they are one of the tallest breeds of goat) and their long pendular ears. Many colour combinations are found which give some Anglo Nubian Goats very attractive mottled, marbled and tortoiseshell coats.
Goats are very agile creatures and in some cases can jump over 5 feet high.
With between 100 and 200 breeding nannies left, the Bagot Goat is classed as Endangered by the Rare Breed Survival Trust. It is one of the rarest animals at Odds Farm Park and we have one of the largest registered herds in the country.
Dating back to the 1300’s, the Bagot Goat is one of the oldest known registered breed of goats in the UK. They are believed to have been given to Sir John Bagot by King Richard II, following his return from the crusades.
The Bagot Goats are all part of an active breeding program and every year, Odds Farm Park actively pairs males and females to ensure their kids have healthy blood lines.
Children can identify the Bagot Goat at Odds Farm Park by their striking appearance. Long haired, their heads and fore-quarters are black and the rest of them are white. In addition, they have curved horns that sweep backwards in a twist. They shouldn’t be missed on a day out with the kids.
Goats do not have any upper front teeth and are extremely picky about what they eat! Coffee was first discovered when goat herders noticed the animals acting very energetic after nibbling on coffee beans!
The British Alpine Goat is not under threat with more than 1,000 breeding registered nannies.
A female goat called Sedgmere Faith arrived from the Paris Zoo in 1903 and is widely recognized as the first breeding British Alpine nanny. The first herd was created in the UK in 1911, however, the exact genetic origins are unknown.
Whilst not threatened in numbers, the British Alpine Goat was the first recorded goat to give a gallon of milk in 24 hours in public. On a day out, they are also very friendly goats for children to meet.
Children will be able to identify the British Alpine by their black coat with white markings on their head, legs and around the tail. They are tall, bulky goats and their coats are fine, short and very soft to stroke. They shouldn’t be missed on a day out.
Goats are excellent swimmers and they also used to be kept on boats to supply the sailors with milk!
The Boer Goat is not under threat.
The Boer goat is a very fast growing, large breed which originated from South Africa in the early 1900s. Their name is derived from the Afrikaans word “boer”, meaning farmer.
Whilst not threatened in numbers the long hanging ears are only found on Boer and Anglo Nubian Goats and are unusual for children to see on a day out. They are also a very docile breed, meaning they are friendly goats for children to meet.
Children will be able to identify the Boer Goat by their large size and white coat with red or brown markings on their head. They also have long pendulous ears. A mature Boer buck can weigh up to about 135 kg!
Goats are very good at climbing. They’ve been known to climb to the tops of trees, or even dams!
With over 1,000 breeding nannies, the English Goat is not classed as threatened by the Rare Breed Survival Trust.
The English Goat was domesticated to provide households with daily milk, as they could maintain high milk yields with low quantity and quality rations. The breed, however, became less common during the 19th Century as incomes grew.
Once upon a time, the English Goat could be seen in every household in every village. They are at Odds Farm Park for their historical significance.
There are a number of characteristics that Children can use to identify the English Goat. As a breed, they are quite small for a goat, measuring less than 70 cm in height with an incredibly large belly used to digest bulky food. Their thick outer coat is grey or brown in colour, their legs are dark in colour and they have a distinctive dark line along their back. Nanny goats usually have a beard.
The pupils in goat’s eyes are rectangular and this allows them to see very well in the dark!
With between 500-1,000 breeding nannies registered in the UK, the Golden Guernsey Goat is classed as a Minority Breed by the Rare Breed Survival Trust.
The exact origin of the Golden Guernsey is uncertain, though it is believed that they have French, Syrian and Maltese ancestry. They arrived in the UK in 1965 from Guernsey and the first reference to them on The Channel Islands is from an 1826 tourism guide book.
All of the Golden Guernsey Goats at Odds Farm Park are in a breeding program. Golden Guernsey Goats are also very quiet, docile and friendly goats for children to meet on a day out.
As its name suggests, the goat is golden in color, with shades ranging from pale blond to deep bronze. They are smaller and more fine-boned than other British milking goats, and there is great variety in coat length. Being so friendly, children will love meeting them.
Goat’s milk is easily digestible and is higher in calcium and vitamin A and less allergenic than cow’s milk. Anything you can make with cow’s milk, you can also make with goat’s milk and, worldwide, more people drink milk from goats than any other animal!
With over 1,000 breeding nannies, the Pygmy Goat is not classed as a rare breed.
Pygmy Goats originated in the Cameroon Valley in West Africa and were imported during the 1950’s to European Zoos. With their cute appearance and friendly personalities, their popularity grew and they were quickly acquired by private breeders. In 1982 the UK’s Pygmy Goat Club was formed.
Pygmy Goats are the smallest type of Goat in the world. Combined with their friendly and fun personalities, they are especially cute for children to meet on a day out.
With adults measuring between 40 and 50 cm, their small size makes it easy for children to spot on a day out. Their coat can vary in colour and length and they can have horns.
Goats are very social creatures and were one of the first animals to be tamed by humans around 7000 B.C. Domestic goats can now be found worldwide.