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© 2023 JOY Goat Development Programme

Advantages

Purebred dairy goats can produce more milk than 75% crosses, but only if fed on dairy meal.  If dairy meal is too expensive, both 75% crosses and purebreds are limited to around 2½ litres per day. But the crosses are much easier to keep healthy.

50% crosses are easier to keep because they do not need to be zero-grazed. But the milk production is much less. If you are aiming to sell milk, then keeping 75% is a more suitable option.

Keeping 75% crossbreeds

Management

75% crosses should be zero-grazed.  The only exception is in the case of ranches that have good disease control, in which case it is possible to open-graze them as long as careful attention is paid to health

Overview of goat types Keeping purebred dairy goats Keeping 50% crossbreeds

Health

The biggest risks to the health of 75% crosses are worms and tick-borne diseases. Because of this, deworming is important every 3 months.  If fever is observed, it is important to get veterinary treatment quickly.

Breeding 75% crosses

When goats of 75% dairy blood are mated among themselves, the offspring are also reckoned as 75%.  Alternatively, a purebred male mated with local females will produce 75% descendents in the second generation. (The first generation are 50% crosses, but if they are mated to another 75% male the next generation are 75% - see diagram.).

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The Future

Crossbreeding is a compromise. The disease resistance of the crossbreeds is not as good as local goats, and the milk production is not as good as European dairy goats. But the crossbreeds are the best option at the moment. However, starting from the 75% dairy crossbreeds we plan to develop the Kabulya Commercial Goat through selective breeding. When it becomes available, it will be a better option than the current 75% crosses.