Sheep or Goat, which would be a better lawnmower?greenspun.com : LUSENET : A Country Singletree : One Thread
I wanted to start a discussion on the topic because I am considering getting a sheep or goat for use as a lawnmower and while being familiar some with the local goat market here, I don't know that much about pricing on sheep.
I know I can purchase a goat for $35 and if the grass gets to poor to feed it, I can always slaughter it and purchase another later when the grass is thick again. By putting it in the freezer, I will be able to apply the overhead costs to both, my property maintenance and food budgets for cost effectivity. How much do sheep sell for now? How different do they clip the turf?
-- Jay Blair in N. AL (firstname.lastname@example.org), May 30, 2002
from what I know, (not much), goats are like deer, browsers. Sheep will eat grass, kinda kill it they shear it so close, it doesnt ahve a chance to recover, unless a roatation is used. Goats are alot more hardy, where a sheep is dumb enough to not get out of the rain or sun
-- Stan (email@example.com), May 30, 2002.
Well, Jay...I've never posted on your forum before and I hope you don't mind me "speaking" here, but, having had both sheep and goats...I believe that sheep will do a better job of close-cropping your grass (IMO). Goats are browsers and will graze somewhat, but sheep will do the job more thoroughly. Goats are just too cute to slaughter...and lamb sure is delicious :-)!!
-- Marcia (HrMr@webtv.net), May 30, 2002.
Thanks for the input folks.
Please dont consider this "my forum". I'm just a janitor, nothing more :>). Please, feel free to post here as often as you care to. This site is growing to more than it started out as due to the recent forum changes.
I know some folks tnink of goats like dogs, but I was raised to look at them as livestock and have eaten them and sheep also.
But I still would like to know how much a sheep would sell for.
-- Jay Blair in N. AL (firstname.lastname@example.org), May 30, 2002.
Jay...where we are, we can get a "bummer" lamb for practically nothing...usually less than $20.00. I haven't bought a weaned lamb for quite awhile, but I'm thinking that they would go for about the same as a weaned kid.
-- Marcia (HrMr@webtv.net), May 30, 2002.
Yup, they are right about the goat thing. They are browsers.
I think it really depends on your area, time of year, age, breed, etc., etc.
It would be difficult to get a goat kid for that price around here. Our bucks, even fairly young, go for more at the salebarn.
That's actually a good option, call a local salebarn and ask what the are going for.
-- Patty (SycamoreHollow1@aol.com), May 30, 2002.
I'll chime in too! Goats eat up, and down, but mostly up, and sheep eat down. A goat will eat your fruit trees, strip bark off of any tree you have, just about. They love poison ivy, and pine trees, but they give them nice piney breath. If all you want is your grass cut with the benefit of food later in the season, get a sheep. Bottle babies or bummer lambs are really cheap, if you go to an auction or know someone who raises them. Maybe you could also rent a few sheep or borrow one or two.
-- Susan in MN (email@example.com), May 30, 2002.
I guess sheep are the choice for lawncare.
-- Jay Blair in N. AL (firstname.lastname@example.org), May 31, 2002.
Geese are good lawn mowers too. I am not a goose lover but they do keep a nice lawn. Just a thought. :) LQ
-- Little Quacker in OR (email@example.com), May 31, 2002.
LQ...do you know if there is any breed of goose (geese?) that is less aggressive to little kids?? I would so love to have some, but wonder about whether or not my 5 yr. old granddaughter would be "safe"!!
-- Marcia (HrMr@webtv.net), May 31, 2002.
Well it's true. Goats eat everything, even the siding on your house. And they don't really like grass, they prefer weeds and shrubs and flowers and such.
African geese are nice, atleast the ones I have are. And they are great at mowing your lawn but they will also mow your garden and flower beds.
-- Jodie in TX (firstname.lastname@example.org), June 01, 2002.
Goats have been my main vexation. Boy, were they a learning process!
I now have one little nubian doe, and a pgymy. I bottle raised the nubian. What a pain in the butt she is! Does not, and will not learn her place in life. ( The barnyard).
This afternoon she got into my yard, and she ate. . . .
4 broccoli plants that had good sized heads on them already. Ate them practically to the ground. Broke two branches off my young cherry tree. Ate almost every leaf and lots of the tender branches on a good sized butterfly bush. Ate a considerable amount of my gooseberry bush. I haven't mowed the yard, and it is full of grass, clover, and plantain. Do you think she ate any of it? NO!
Maybe a sheep would be better Jay. Or a calf.
-- Granny Hen (cluckin email@example.com), June 02, 2002.
No calf!! I am in that place right now and it has to be the biggest dumb ass I ever did see. I'll take my goats and sheep anyday!! Jay, if you tether the sheep and move them each day they'll keep things groomed. If doing this I would recommend being home to make sure a predator or loose dog doesn't get at them and brining them into a pen/shed at night. On the other hand elictric net fencing would work really well and keep the bad guys out! Plus, they are a herd animal so you kinda need more than one. Sheep are not always the sweet cuddly critters you see on TV etc whereas goats often are sweet and cuddly and vexxing!! As for eating goats, gotta say yummy. They rank in there between lamb and venison for flavor. Cute as hell but as my husband is always saying "You can't keep them all!" Another idea is pasturing rabbits or chickens. Easier to handle and generally cheaper to buy.
-- Alison in NS (firstname.lastname@example.org), June 04, 2002.
We love our goats as pets, but they are not proving to be an easy answer to keeping our 5 acres clear. They are wading through heavy brush and deep grass, nibbling here and there, but going for the bark of our beautiful trees. We are looking into sheep as an alternative.
You can't beat the goat for friendliness, but we already have a dog. We need something to help with the grass.
-- April Ruth Boneski (email@example.com), July 08, 2002.