Why Free Animals Are A BAD Homestead Investment

By Canaan and Nikki Manley

Why Free Animals Are A BAD Homestead Investment

Image source: Pixabay.com

Most Free Animals Are Male

Most of the animals you’ll see available for free are males. From intact buck goats and wethers to roosters, buck rabbits and drake ducks, nearly every farmer deals with an overabundance of boys from time to time.

So, why would you not want to take advantage of free males, especially if it’s a type of animal you might be planning to breed?

First, males given away for free are often not of the highest quality. They may be lacking proper bone structure, muscling, libido or markings. Even if they have these things, they may be past their prime, meaning low settling rates from either a low sperm count or diminished breeding hormones.

Second, males take more planning to house and care for. This is especially true of livestock that have a particular breeding season. Male goats can be quite destructive during the fall rut, even when running with a herd of females. Turkey toms that co-exist with other poultry through most of the year can be particularly aggressive at the beginning of the breeding season and may need to be separated.

Unsexed or Incorrectly Sexed

Craigslist and sale boards are full of free animal posts that start with the story of “we brought home two critters that were supposed to be males, and turns out one was a girl” or vice versa. Regrettably, not everyone who has livestock knows how to determine an animal’s sex. To get around it, animals will often be listed as “unsexed,” “straight run,” or as a “must take all” grouping. Sometimes an uneducated owner will just take a guess on sex entirely and give it away.

To avoid unexpected complications down the road, know how to sex the animal you are planning to take in, or have a friend or family member that knows how Click to see the original article