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Roy Austin   El Dorado, CA  530-621-2920


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Kiko vs. Boer Goats Fed in a Feedlot: Some Observational Data

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by Dr. Niki Whitley
University of Maryland Eastern Shore

In doing our probiotics studies in goats, two of the three studies we conducted used Boer or Kiko sired Boer-crossbred kids. Although there was only one sire per breed with a different Boer sire the first year and the same Kiko sire both years, the following information is observational data about their performance in a feedlot situation. Boer-sired kids were 75% Boer, 25% Spanish/Myotonic; Kiko-sired kids were 50% Kiko, 50% Boer. The Kiko buck was from Kyle Jonak in Keedysville, MD; Boer bucks came from Texas and Georgia.

In Year 1, we had 8 Kiko-sired wethers and 16 Boer-sired wethers fed a commercially available pelleted diet (15% Meat Goat Feed, Southern States) for 56 days. Kiko-sired kids gained 0.36 lb/day while Boer-sired kids gained 0.33 lb/day.

In Year 2, we fed the same diet and had 12 Boer-sired and 12 Kiko-sired wethers. Kiko-sired kids again gained a bit faster than the Boer-sired kids. Kiko-sired kids gained 0.28 lb/day while Boer-sired kids gained 0.20 lb/day during the 56-day feeding period.

We slaughtered all of the wethers in Year 2 and collected some carcass data. For these animals, Kiko-sired kids finished faster, having more fat over the loin (at the 12th/13th rib) at the same age, with 0.08 inches for Kiko-sired wethers compared to 0.06 inches for Boer-sired wethers. Kiko-sired kids also had a larger loin eye area (between the 12th/13th rib) than Boer-sired kids (1.98 square inches for Kiko-sired kids vs 1.79 square inches for Boer-sired kids).

Unfortunately, it seems that none of the animals gained weight very fast. Perhaps if we fed a different diet or started the animals at a younger age, they would have higher average daily gains. If the animals were bucks instead of wethers, they would also grow faster.

In Ranch and Rural Living Magazine (October 2005, page 21), San Angelo State University reported that bucks on their performance test gained an average of 0.50 lb/day during the 90-day test period, which is much higher than for our wethers. However, the average rib eye area for the San Angelo State University buck test was 1.90 square inches (as measured by ultrasound), and our average was 1.89 square inches, so our kids competed just fine in the muscling area.

Susan Schoenian is hoping to have a pasture-based progeny performance test at WMREC next year. Several Kiko breeders have expressed interest in putting animals in the test. If we also get some Boer goats for the test, perhaps we can get some information on Kiko compared to Boer goats raised mostly on pasture.


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