Friday, November 5, 2010

Schedule for 2011 test

The schedule for the 2011 Western Maryland Pasture-Based Meat Goat Performance Test has been established.  The goats must be delivered to the test site on June 3 or 4.  There will be a five day adjustment period.  Starting weights will be determined on June 9.

Bucks from 2010 test upon delivery
Thereafter, the goats will be worked every two weeks to determine weights, FAMACHA©, body condition, coat condition, and dag scores. Individual fecal samples will be collected bi-weekly.  Pooled fecal samples will be collected every 4 weeks.

The test will last for 100 days.  It will end on September 15.  The goats will be scanned towards the end of the test.  They will be evaluated for reproductive soundness and structural correctness.

The field day, sale, and skillathon will be held on Saturday, September 24 (a week earlier than previous years).

Tentative schedule
June 4 or 5 - goats delivered to test site
June 9 - first work day
June 23 - work day
July 7 - work day
July 21 - work day
August 4- work day
August 18 - work day
September 1 - work day (scan goats and collect additional data)
September 15 - final work day
September 24 - sale, field day, and skillathon

The carcass evaluation will be done the week after the sale.  Plans are underway to feed a separate group of goats (half or full-sibs to the bucks on test) in order to compare carcasses from grass-fed and grain fed goats.

The requirements are the same as previous years.  Male goats, of any breed or breed cross, must be born between December 15, 2010 and March 20, 2011.  They must weigh between 35 and 70 lbs. upon delivery to the test site on June 3 or 4.  The average delivery weight of the bucks in 2010 was 44.1 lbs.

Since the goats have been gaining weight during the previous adjustment periods, it was decided to shorten the adjustment period to 5 days, so the test could be ended a week earlier and the sale held a week earlier.

Questions pertaining to the 2010 test should be directed to Susan Schoenian at (301) 432-2767 x343 or or a member of the test committee.