The history of goats dates back thousands of years with archaeological records found in parts of Asia and Africa. Goats (Capra aegagrus hircus) were domesticated over 9,000 years ago. Goats are multi-purpose animals which supply fibre, milk, meat and hide and have been an essential part of civilizations throughout human history. Today goats are the most commercially produced animal with more milk and meat being consumed from goats than any other animal.
Over 80% of the world’s goat population lives in Asia and Africa as feral and domestic animals. Goats originate in warm, dry Mediterranean and western Asian countries. Goats are ruminants, animals that utilize a rumen for the digestion of food. A rumen is a type of stomach where microbes digest eaten plant material, instead of a digestive acids. Goats have a voracious appetite (one that is not satisfied), and will eat a wide range of vegetation.
Some common breeds include;
The hairy Angora Goat. This well-known goat is used and for fiber production.
The Boer Goat. This goat is commonly used for milk production and is popular in countries such as Australia.
The Saanen Goat
The Pigmy Goat
the Nubian Goat