The O’Halloran Mohair Story
Angora goats have been part of our farmyard since 1987, which was shortly after we moved to the Waikato. After settling into our fifteen acre property in Ohaupo we purchased five Angora does and for that first year leased a buck.
Now nearly thirty years later we can tell you many good goat stories and we are still very enthusiastic about farming them. In the early years, since there was very little information on Angora goat farming, it was a matter of trial and error to find the right solutions to some of the challenges we faced. Over the years the goats have been bred to suit our country’s conditions so the time we spend on handling them now is very minimal compared to years ago. The quality and quantity of fibre from each animal has increased dramatically since the early years.
From our fifteen acre sandy loam property we moved to another property in Ohaupo, this one was fifty acres and mainly consisted of peat soils. The goats adapted well to their new environment and mainly had the run of the farm since most of the fences were two wire electric fences. They liked to graze too on the vegetation growing alongside the drains and join the cattle when they were eating their hay and haylage. With having a bigger acreage, our goat numbers increased and we were able to cull heavily for undesirable traits and ill-thrift.
In May 2014 we moved from this property to a forty-five acre property in Te Mata, near Raglan. This block is great for the goats with the hills, gullies, rocks, bush areas and a rich variety of pasture vegetation. Until we had fences built, a farm shed constructed and the streams and bush blocks fenced off, it was quite a challenging time ensuring the cattle and goats were adequately confined and during kidding time making sure the new-born kids were protected from the weather.
Our six children have thoroughly enjoyed playing with and helping with the goats. Since Angora goats are such inquisitive, friendly, docile animals, and the little kids are especially appealing and happy to be picked up, our children and their friends spent many hours with them. Now our grandchildren, as well as our children, enjoy coming to visit us and spending time with the goats.