Goat breed in its own right
Kalahari Reds can be used to give Australian goats a uniform, solid red colour, with all the unique advantages that this brings. Their earthy colour provides a good camouflage that protects them from predators. White kids would be seen easily by foxes pigs and eagles. They are fully pigmented, and therefore able to endure heat and strong sunshine. Their dark coats and long ears provide good heat resistance, and will, therefore, feed for longer during he heat of the day, which ultimately means higher weight gains.
Interest in the Kalahari Red breed is widespread, and has come from as far afield as Australia. And with good reason, says Albie Horn, chairman of the Kalahari Red Club of South Africa. The hardiness of the breed, its excellent walking ability and good mothering attributes make it ideally suited to the harsh conditions predominant in large parts of South Africa and Australia. The animals are fully pigmented and therefore able to endure heat and strong sunshine, while their colour serves to camouflage them from predators. Ewes use their sharp horns to protect their young.
With their earthy colour, good mothering abilities and excellent mobility, the Kalahari Red is drawing widespread interest from breeders both locally and abroad.
Kalahari Reds are less susceptible to diseases and need to be inoculated and dosed far less than other breeds. All of these easy-care qualities make the Kalahari Red a popular choice in areas where farming is less labour-intensive.
The registration of the breed was the culmination of more than 25 years of perseverance by a small but enthusiastic group of breeders in South Africa and neighbouring Namibia. Although Red Boers were used haphazardly, this practice was soon terminated. Breeders select Kalahari Reds for their natural qualities and for functional effectiveness.
The ewes are fertile and produce plenty of milk, thanks to their mulch goat ancestors. They both lamb and raise their kids in the veld. Breeders tend to select specifically for twins, which are normally of equal strength. To prevent kid mortalities as result of an inability to suck, breeders select specifically for well-developed and properly attached teats.
In Australia, breeders of the indigenous Red Australian Farrels are crossbreeding with Kalahari Reds to produce a uniform red colour. The meat is much in demand by the market for organically produced meat. In this respect, the Kalahari Red is used to good advantage to improve the carcass mass of indigenous Australian goats, and the breed offers exciting possibilities for developing the goat meat industry in Australia.