Goats Of Gold – Angora Goats
Angoras are an ancient goat breed used for their fibre, commonly known as hair.
Goats are capable of producing two types of fibres: Cashmere and Mohair.
Angoras produce Mohair fibres. The word Mohair derives from the word Muhaya meaning "cloth of bright goat hair."
They are highly prized hairs that are used to make clothing either alone, or blended with other natural fibres, such as wool.
It takes up dye very easily as well.
Do not confuse Angora wool, which comes from Angora rabbits with Angora goat mohair.
The breed comes from Turkey, where the sale of their fleece was banned for a long time.
Eventually, though, in the 19th century, the ban was lifted and the Angoras were imported to Texas and South Africa.
Angoras arrived in the UK in 1981 from Australasia, Canada, Spain and France.
The Spanish and French Angoras introduced South African bloodlines into the UK.
Crossbreeding Angoras with Mogis, will produce a cross-breed known as Cashgora. Their hair is a mixture of Cashmere and Mohair.
Goats produce about an inch of mohair a month with an average annual yield of roughly 14 kilos.
Angora Goat With
Young Angora Goat
The fibre is usually sheared twice a year, making the average yield per shearing around 7 to 7.5 kilos.
The fibre makes soft, lustrous and hard-wearing fibres. In fact, it is so hard-wearing that the hairs are sometimes called "diamond fibre."
It is used to make cloth, clothes, yarns and textiles.
Angoras are good for fibre, meat and skins.
Angora goats produce little milk and do not make very good mothers.
They produce a single coat of hair, which is different from most other breeds, which produce two coats; one with coarse outer hairs and the other an undercoat with downy hairs.
Cashmere is actually the undercoat.
In fact, if the Angora does produce coarse hairs, it is considered a fault. These coarse hairs are called kemp, or medullated fibres.
Angoras are not robust goats.
As is the case with other breeds, they require high levels of protein and energy, especially during early growth, as well as during reproduction, gestation and lactation.
The hairs on the backside, as well as the teat area, usually requires clipping to keep the goat cleaner and to provide access for the kids to nurse.
Sheared Angora Goat
In terms of temperament, Angoras are more laid back and tend not to fight as much with each other, as other goats.
They are also far less mischievous.
4th March 2016
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