About domestic goats.
The domestic goat is a subspecies that comes from the wild goats of Southern Asia and Eastern Europe. It is believed to be the first animal to be domesticated by humans, more than 10,000 years ago.
Baby goats are called ‘kids’ or ‘billies’, and males are called ‘bucks’ (or ‘wethers’ if castrated).
There are many goat breeds (more than 300).
Goats are ruminants, which means that they have four stomachs or, more precisely, four different compartments in their digestive system where the processes of rumination and digestion take place. These are called rumen, reticulum, omasum and abomasum.
They are very robust and agile animals with excellent coordination; goats are capable of climbing very steep hillsides and cliffs with poor accessibility and live in the most inhospitable places. They have padded hooves that help them climb almost vertical hillsides.
Goats have beard, both males and females.
According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, the estimated world population of goats in 2011 was over 924 million.
Goats have horizontal pupils (it is the only mammal with this characteristic) that rotate when they put their head down to eat, so that they stay aligned with the ground. This evolutionary trait helps them have a panoramic vision, much better to detect predators in the environment where they live.
They have an excellent memory. Research has shown that they can solve complex tasks and remember how to complete them after 10 months.
They have accents. A goat’s bleating (this is the name of the sound they make) can change depending on the group they are in, and helps them identify others.
They are more intelligent and more independent than their relatives the sheep, and unlike the sheep, they have horns.
Females can recognize their babies’ bleats, even if they a year without seeing them.
|COMMON NAME||CONSERVATION STATUS|
|Domestic goat||Not evaluated|
|Capra aegagrus hircus||124-178 cm (49-70 in)|
|Bovidae||20-140 kg (450-300 lbs)|
|This species is common.||They eat a wide variety of plants (up to 600) that grow in areas very difficult to access for other animals.|
|They live in areas where other quadrupedal animals could not live because of their elevation or slope.||As it is a domesticated animal, it is found all over the world. However it is more common in Asia and the Middle East, in mountain areas where it can feed on food that other animals, like sheep, can not reach.|