The Chamois Colored Goat is a breed of mountain goats that was developed in Switzerland. These are domesticated, dual-purpose goats that are popular for their good quality meat and tasty milk (and other dairy products). Known for their gentle disposition and good looks, these animals are also reared simply as house/farm pets in many places.
|Also known as||French: Chèvre chamoisée, German: Gämsfarbige Gebirgsziege, Italian: Camosciata delle Alpi, British: Chamois Coloured Goat|
|Characteristics||Strongly-built body with a vigorous appearance; medium built stature with a long face and a broad muzzle and deep jaws; the forehead is wide, while the eyes are prominent; the ears are set low and point forward|
|Coat Hair||Light tan to red|
|Body Coloration||Brown wool with black dorsal stripes on lower limbs|
|Face Color||Black to brown color-points/stripes|
|Beard||Only in males (sexual dimorphism)|
|Horn||Some are polled, others have long horns|
|Uses||Milk production, Meat production
|Lactation Duration||270 days|
|Weight||Buck: 75 kg (minimum average);
Nanny: 55 kg (minimum average)
|Height (size)||Buck: 85 cm;
Nanny: 75 cm
|Country of Origin||Switzerland|
|Climate Tolerance||Tolerant to all climates|
|Conservation Status||Not at risk|
History and Development
The Chamois Coloured Goat originated in Switzerland, and belongs to the Swiss Mountain group. Other than the production of milk and meat, they also served as pack animals, helping in transporting of goods. Over the years, the breed spread throughout parts of Austria and northern Italy, and had even been exported to different other countries like France. The Swiss herd-book for this goat was established in 1930.
Two different strains of this breed are found:
- The Horned Type: These are found in the eastern parts of Switzerland in Grisons (Graubünden)
- The Hornless Type: This variety is common in central Switzerland in the Hasli region, as well as around the area of Brienz and Lake Brienz in the Bernese Oberland.
Other than this, there can also be two different varieties, depending on body color. Coat colors can range from light tan to deep red. This pattern comes in two different shades: black and chocolate. A chocolate chamois will have chocolate points in place of black.
Temperament and Personality
They are known for their extremely docile and gentle nature, for which, it is also easy to keep them as pets. They are a highly adaptable breed, and are very good foragers. They are also not afraid of water, or any other natural elements that fall along their trails.
Meat (Chevon) and Milk Production
The does are good producers of milk. On an average, a female would yield about 700 kg milk per lactation period. The milk is nutritious and contains about 3.4% fat and 2.9% protein.
The live market weight of the goat is at least 55-75 kilos. The quality of meat is said to be tender.
The number of chamois goats reported in Switzerland was 13,000, while the registered population figure was 6237 in Italy, in 2013. The 2012 census in Austria showed a population of 2526–3000.
- Some countries consider the hornless variety an independent breed and have named them the Oberhasli goat.
Video: The Chamois Colored Goat Foraging in the Mountain