Boer goat

Capra hircus

Quick Facts

Boer goat

Found: breed developed in Africa
Size: see weight
Weight: 200 to 300 pounds
Diet: brush, shrubs, leaves, grasses
Life Span: 10 to 14 years
Status: Common

Thousands of  years ago, man domesticated the goat.  In the days when ships would set sail for far away countries, goats were taken on board to provide fresh milk as well as meat. Goats became extremely widespread in their distribution by being introduced into new areas by these early sailors.  Overgrazing by introduced goats has had a serious impact on native wild species and in several places throughout the world has directly caused the extinction of native species.

Goats are closely related to sheep, yet there are a few distinct differences. The horns of most goats extend upward and backward, while those of the sheep curve downward and in a half circle. The forehead of the goat is convex, not concave as in sheep. Interestingly, both male and female goats have horns. In sheep, usually only the males have horns. The male goat is often referred to as a billy goat.   A female over two years old is called a nanny goat.

Boer goat   Boer goat   Boer goat