In the year 2002 Bill and Lynda Carter were looking to expand their agricultural activities looking toward future years when they could “retire” to the farm. As with any business there is a need for capital outlay and a little knowledge so you won’t fall “flat on your face”. We liked the idea of raising meat goats and proceeded to research the breeds.
We took the plunge in 2003 and purchased a small quantity of commercial crossbred goats. They were nice goats but kidding time was a lot of work. After learning about Kiko Goats and obtaining a few Kiko does kidding time became much less stressful.
In 2004 High Meadows Kikos was established and we began adding more does and building our Kiko Goat herd. The most important thing shared with me by a knowledgeable producer was, “don’t grow to big to fast”.
We liked the Kiko Goat breed. It was promoted as the “working man’s goat”, a goat to meet the needs of the meat market.
Our original purchase was two New Zealand does, two Purebred does and 25 percentage does. The initial herd came from Q Farm. The NZ and PB does were produced by Q Farm and the percentage does came out of the TNT herd in Illinois and the Taylor Farm in Georgia.
High Meadows expanded the herd to over 100 and did not use more than two bucks during a breeding season. The first five years of raising goats we kept back what we considered the top performers. We started selling our better percentage does to other Kiko producers. The goats that were not top producers were sold to the commercial market. The poor performers were sold to the meat market. Meat market goats included “New Zealand” and “Purebred”.
High Meadows plans are to apply the same principals that we did in the early days of breeding Kiko Goats. Remember this is an open nucleus breed not a final product (breed).
High Meadows goals:
#1 Keep or sell to other breeders only the best. Does who do not raise their kids are culled.
#2 Collect data. Birth weights, 90 day, 150 day. We do not breed our select does until they are around 18 months of age.
#3 Parasite resistance. We have not had parasite issues in several years. We credit that to “culling”, stocking rates and pasture rotation.
#4 Continue to cull undesirable physical traits in kids as defined by High Meadows.
#5 We believe does are key to the future of the breed and continue to strive for excellence
#6 Bucks are secondary production to High Meadows. We keep and sell a very limited number.
#7 Sell Kiko Goats as “seed stock” to improve meat goat production in the Appalachian Mountains.
The Kiko Goat of New Zealand is continuing to develop. After several years of development in New Zealand a few breeding animals were brought to the United States to improve meat goat stock. High Meadows saw this as an opportunity for the next ten years to “breed up” our does to Purebred by using different bucks and keeping a select group of does. We have used nine different bucks that were registered as “New Zealand” or “Purebred”. We changed bucks to complement our doe herd by population genetics. A NZ buck or PB buck is a “bred up” buck and we reviewed registration papers to avoid crossing to closely. We felt it would “dwarf” our kid population if we did not outcross. There were only 94 kikos that originally came into the US so inbreeding could easily occur and disrupt the size development of goats.
The registration classification of “100% New Zealand”is a “bred up” goat from New Zealand. There were 94 Kiko originally brought to the United States. It seems to us they were brought to the US so they could improve the breed and influence the meat market in a positive way in the United States. This is why we were and still are excited about the breed today.
The registration classification of Purebred is “bred up” goat from New Zealand. The original Kikos were used on North American goats to improve and expand the population of Kiko Goats.
It is interesting to notice that the breed was developed in New Zealand on production not parentage parameters, using population genetics policies not pedigree based policies. Most US breeders continue to claim that benefit of the breed as being superior but do not continue using population genetics. No doubt some breeders have made significant gains since 1996 but we must continue to work in a market that is clearly focused on pedigree reward in order to maintain those gains.
High Meadows is excited about the Kiko Goat breed.It is a breed still being developed in the United States as well as in New Zealand. The Kiko was an open nucleus breed during the entire time of it’s development in New Zealand. The terms “fullblood”and “100% New Zealand” remain a topic of discussion to some Kiko producers.
High Meadows produces
Purebred Kiko Goats of New Zealand
Commercial stock is available
Thank you for visiting High Meadows