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Goat Stall Feeding: An Alternative to Traditional Grazing Systems


Stall feeding involves confining goats and providing them with feed in the stall. in this system, the cut-and-carry method is employed. Mixtures of grasses, legumes, and tree leaves are given. Concentrates are also given depending on sufficiency of the forages and the stage of development of the animals.

Advantages of stall feeding

  • As goats are confined and not exposed to inclement weather, parasitism and other disease, infections are reduced.
  • Your goats cannot damage crops and other properties.
  • You can use other feed resources, making it possible to raise more goats even if your area is limited.
  • You can make use of labor that is only available at certain times of the day.
  • You can easily control and manage the breeding of your goats.
  • As goats are housed, there is lesser risk of theft or predator.
  • Kids can get m0re access to their does for suckling.
  • Manure can easily be collected.

Confined Goat Stalled Fed

Requisites for adoption
  • For stall feeding to be viable, you need to have the following:
  • Adequate supply of cut-and-carry feed, preferably close to the goat house.
  • Labor for cutting and feeding.
  • Houses facilities.

Feed resources for stall feeding

Shrubs and tree leaves for stall feeding

Advantages of Shrubs and Tree Leaves
Shrubs and tree leaves are good feed sources for stall feeding because of the following reasons:
They are sustainable sources of feed for your goats.
  • They are relatively less expensive than concentrates. Compared to the other feeds with the same amount of nutrients, feed cost using this resource is likewise relatively lower.
  • Because they do not grow old quickly, shrub/tree leaves do not lose their nutritive quality and are thus more nutritious than grasses; hence they can provide more feed for a sustained period of time compared to other feed resources.
  • Goats love to consume shrub and tree leaves of up to 60% of their diet and they can grow reasonably well on these even without other feeds.
  • Digestion is improved because shrub and tree leaves provide nutrients that enable rumen microorganisms to better digest feed.
  • Occurrence of worms in your goats in prevented because the leaves are located high such that they cannot be reached by infective stages of worms.

Shrubs and tree leaves for stall feeding
To ensure that goats get the right amount of nutrients, give a mixture of grasses and shrub/tree leaves. Be guided by these ratios and proportions.

 Stage of Growth
 Good Forage Mixture

 Goats that are fattened
 3 parts grass : 1 part shrub/tree leaves
 All other goats  2 parts grass : 1 part shrub/tree leaves

Common Shrubs and Trees Leaves
The following lists some of the most common shrubs and trees whose leaves are fed to goats. Use this as your guide in selecting the forages to stall feed.
  • Langil (Albizia lebbek)
  • Nangka; jackfruit (Artocarpus heterophyllus)
  • Bamboo; kawayan (Bambusa sp.)
  • Alibangbang (Bauhinia sp.)
  • Kadios; tabios (Cajanus cajan)
  • Calliandra (Calliandra calothyrsus)
  • Kapok (Ceiba pentandra)
  • Kaimito (Chrysophyllum cainito)
  • Codarrio, karikut-rikut (Codariocalyx gyroides)
  • Desmanthus (Desmanthus virgatus)
  • Rensoni (Desmodium rensonii)
  • Dapdap (Erythrina orientalis)
  • Balete (Ficus sp.)
  • Malabalatong (Flemengia macrophylla)
  • Madre-de-kakaw; kakawate (Gliricidia sepium)
  • Gumamela (Hibiscus rosa-sinensis)
  • Balibago; malbago (Hibiscus tiliaceus)
  • Diversifolia (Leucaena diversifolia)
  • Ipil-ipil (Leucaena leucocephala)
  • Mangga (Mangifera indica)
  • Kamoteng kahoy; balinghoy (Manihot esculenta)
  • Malunggay (Moringa oleifera)
  • Mulberry (Morus alba)
  • Kamachile (Pithecellobium dulce)
  • Acasia (Samanea saman)
  • Katuray (Sesbania grandiflora)
  • Sesban (Sesbania sesban)
  • Sampalok; sambag (Tamarindus indica)

Shrubs and Trees Leaves as Dewormers
Some shrubs and trees, such as the following can also be used as dewormers for your goats, as they contain anthelmintic properties

Botanical Name  Common Name  Directions for Use
 Anona squamosa  Atis/Custard apple  Raw leaves fed ad libitum
 Pithecellobium dulce  Kamonsil/Kamachile  Raw leaves fed ad libitum
 Gliricidia sepium  Kakawate/Madre-de-kakaw  Raw leaves fed ad libitum
 Streblus asper Aludig/ Bugtai  Boiled leaf/stem juice drenched once a day
 Artocarpus heterophyllus  Jackfruit/ langka  Decoction of leaves given orally, repeated after one week

Crop residues and market wastes for stall feeding
Crop residues are waste products from crop production while market wastes are trimmings from vegetables and fruits.

The commonly used crop-residues for goats include:
  • corn stover
  • rice straw
  • peanut hay
  • soybean pods
  • mungbean pods
  • acacia pods
Market wastes that can be used to feed your goats include:
  • vegetable peelings
  • rejected vegetable leaves such as those from cabbage and pechay
  • fruit peelings such as from banana cue processing
Using locally available crop-residues and market wastes enables you to:
  • make use of products that would otherwise be wasted
  • prevent pollution other brought about by improper disposal or burning of the materials  
  • provide adequate amount of feed to goats at times when the main feed resource is scarce such as during dry season
Crop residues and market wastes have relatively low quality and are often hard to digest mainly because of an imbalance in the amount of nutrients they contain.

Crop residues and market wastes should not exceed half of the total amount of feed that is eaten by your goats; the other half should consist of grass, shrub/tree leaves, and if possible, concentrates - these will help sustain and make the rumen microorganisms better able to digest the crop residues and market wastes.

Always offer large (preferably unlimited) amount of crop residue or market waste to allow your goat to select the most nutritious part of the feed that is given - however, the grass, shrub/tree leaves or concentrate should be offered beforehand.

Crop residues and market wastes should gradually be introduced as feed to your goats - sudden changes in feed can cause damage to the goat's digestive system, and may cause disease or death

To be able to use crop residues and market wastes, you need to have adequate facilities and labor for their collection, transport and storage.

Concentrates as supplements for stall-fed goats

Kinds of Concentrates.
Concentrates are feeds that contain high amounts of specific nutrients. They are actually agro-industrial by-products and are either fed pure or in mixture.

The following are common agro-industrial by-products and the specific nutrients that they supply to goats.
Concentrate Nutrient supplied
copra meal protein
corn bran energy
rice bran, cono energy
rice bran, kiskis energy
wheat pollard protein
soybean oil meal protein
fish meal protein
meat and bone meal protein

Using Concentrates
Using concentrates in feeding your goats will provide them nutrients that:
  • are directly digested, absorbed, and used for nourishment by the goat's body
  • will enable the rumen microorganisms to better digest other harder feeds
Concentrates are expensive; as such they should only be used during critical periods or situations, which include:
  • for fattened goats, given during the last month of the fattening period before sale
  • for does, start at one month before before kidding up to weaning of the kids
  • for goats fed with low quality feeds like crop residues or market wastes
  • for sick and thin animals 
Except for milking does, mature goats should not be given more than 10 grams of concentrate for every kilogram body-weight. When concentrates are fed in high amounts, they can cause
  • your goats to eat less of the accompanying feed
  • problems in the digestion of feeds by your goats
You need to start feeding your goats with a small amount of concentrate, gradually increasing it until you reach the desired amount, because their stomachs are still not capable of digesting leaves and fibrous plant materials, kids that are not yet weaned should be fed as much concentrate as possible (preferably unlimited). Concentrates provide your goats with large amounts of readily digestible nutrients

Concentrate Mixture

Mixing your own concentrates.
Mixing concentrates for your goats is easy and can help you produce feed with the right amount of nutrients at reasonable cost. The following shows some common formulation of concentrates for goats:
  1. Concentrate mixture containing 18-20% protein, for goats 4-8 months old
  2. Concentrate mixture containing 16-18% protein, for breeding, fattening and pregnant goats
  3. Concentrate mixture containing 16-18% protein, for does with suckling kids
Properly mix the concentrates to ensure that the ingredients are evenly distributed into the mixture. Mixing your own concentrates enables you to produce feed with the right amount nutrients at reasonable cost for your goat.

Minerals as supplements for stall-fed goats

Common Table Salt
Common table salt is a good mineral supplement that you can continuously give to goats. Simply put half a kilo of salt in a 12 inch bamboo tube, perforated with small holes at the lower end of the node. Hang it in your pen and let goats lick the melting salt seeping through the holes. Salt supplement is best offered in bamboo containers hang inside the pen for your goats to lick.

Urea Molasses Mineral Block (UMMB)
Urea Molasses Mineral Block (UMMB) is also a good supplement for goats. They contain urea, energy as well as essential minerals and vitamins which are intended to be consumed by licking.

UMMB is supplemented to goats fed low quality feeds such as old forages or crop residues and market wastes; its effect is not very evident when your goats are eating good quality feed. Goat licking UMMB. You need to limit the amount of UMMB licked by each animal, making sure that a 1kg tube can be consumed in around 20 days; excessive amounts might lead to poisoning.

You can hang UMMB in strategic areas in the pen, locating it high enough so that the goats can only lick, and not bite them. UMMB and salt can be hang together for the goats to lick conveniently.

Caution should be exercised so that young goats, 4 months and below, will not be able to access the UMMB. This is because their digestive system is not yet ready to digest the components of the block.

The following shows the common formulation of UMMB:

Ingredient Parts per 100kg Mixture (kg)
Molasses 38
Rice bran (D1 or first class darak or tahop) 38
Urea 10
Cement 10
Dicaphos 3
Table salt 1

When preparing UMMB, follow these procedures
  1. Mix the molasses and the urea thoroughly in a vat or a container big enough to accomodate a 100 kg mixture
  2. Continue mixing while adding dicaphos, salt and cement; until all lumps disappear
  3. Add the rice bran and hand mix if possible to ensure that the rice bran is thoroughly mixed and blended with the rest of the ingredients
  4. Mold into blocks weighing 1kg each. If possible, roll the mixture to form a tube. The tube does not have corners , that otherwise would be easily nibbled by goats.
  5. Store in a dry ventilated area away from moisture source.
  6. Allow a 15-day curing period before utilizing the block.
See video below on how to prepare UMMB

A low-technology and traditional way of making the Urea Molasses Multinutrient Block (UMMB). Simplicity is the key,this UMMB project can be made with a very simple method.

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