|Title||Bonding of goats to sheep and cattle for protection from predators|
|Publication Type||Journal Article|
|Year of Publication||1988|
|Authors||Hulet, Clarence V., Anderson D.M., Smith J.N., Shupe, W. Larry, Taylor, Jr. D.A., Murray L.W.|
|Journal||Applied Animal Behavior Science|
Fourteen 5-month-old mohair goats previously confined with heifers for 60 days were randomized into two groups. Group 1 was confined with two heifers for an additional 14 days. Group 2 was confined with eight previously cattle-bonded sheep and a heifer for 14 days. A third group of six non-bonded sheep and seven goats, and three heifers with calves served as a control. The three groups were randomized among three brushy range pastures averaging 190 ha and rotated whenever a goat or sheep was found dead or missing. Control goats, control lambs and Group 1 goats were observed to move independently of the cattle. Group 2 goats consistently stayed with the bonded sheep and cattle. Sheep and goats which did not stay with cattle were killed by predators starting 5 days after going to pasture. Within 10 days all goats, one lamb from the control group and six of the seven goats from Group 1 were dead, wounded or missing. Only the smallest goat in Group 2 was lost. This group was rotated among the three pastures for an additional 21 days with no further loss.