Onion Creek Ranch, Lohn, Texas
Suzanne W. Gasparotto, Onion Creek Ranch, Lohn, TX
Lohn, Texas
Onion Creek Ranch "Chevon, cabrito, goat... No matter what you call it, it is the HEALTHY red meat™
Onion Creek Ranch
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EARTAGGING SIMPLIFIED

Once a producer has accumulated a few goats, especially if different breeds and/or bloodlines are involved, a simple yet inexpensive identification system is important for accurate record keeping. Below is an example of eartagging for quick and easy visual identification used at Onion Creek Ranch. Because eartags can be lost or removed, this system is generally not considered a form of permanent identification.

At Onion Creek Ranch, there are six pieces of information that eartags are used to provide. sex, herd, breed, individual, scrapie, and sire. The first five items are all provided by a single eartag. Location of the tag identifies sex. Color of the tag identifies breed. All females receive this five-item identification tag in the right ear, while all bucks are tagged in the left ear. The information printed on the tag includes the OCR herd ID, numbers that are used both to identify the goat within the ranch's herd and for purposes of the scrapie program, and Onion Creek Ranch's state-assigned scrapie herd tag number.

Raising breeding stock requires the maintenance and utilization of lots of different genetic lines, so a second tag was introduced to identify the sire of each goat. Premier1Supplies makes a small double-sided Swivel Tag that comes in 14 colors and can be imprinted on both sides with the sire's name. This sire tag is put into the other ear. Does are sire tagged in the left ear and bucks in the right ear. If more than 14 sires are used -- and they are at Onion Creek Ranch -- then blank white RotoTags with the sire name written on it with permanent marker are utilized. The reason that blank white Roto Tags are used is that the blank white Swivel Tags cannot be written upon and the blank white Roto tags accept black marking pens.

Onion Creek Ranch raises breeding stock and ships them across the country and around the world. Therefore, scrapie tagging is required. By using the double-sided Premier MiniTag, it has been possible to combine all this information into one color-coded tag. The individual scrapie number is also used as an individual goat identifier within that herd. This combo tag has eliminated the need for a third ear tag, leaving each goat with one eartag in each ear . . . . one tag identifying the breed, herd, sex, scrapie, and individual goat ID and the other tag revealing the goat's sire.

While this may sound complicated and difficult to learn, producers will be pleasantly surprised just how quickly you learn that a green sire tag with "Clay" printed on it indicates OCR Clay is the father of the goat; the tags just "jump out" at you when you are in the pasture looking at them. An additional benefit is that if one tag is lost, the remaining tag makes it easier to backtrack and find out who the goat is for retagging purposes.

These tags are inexpensive, easy to use, and a tremendous management tool.

Meat Goat Mania
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Important! Please Read This Notice!

All information provided in these articles is based either on personal experience or information provided by others whose treatments and practices have been discussed fully with a vet for accuracy and effectiveness before passing them on to readers.

In all cases, it is your responsibility to obtain veterinary services and advice before using any of the information provided in these articles. Suzanne Gasparotto is not a veterinarian.Neither tennesseemeatgoats.com nor any of the contributors to this website will be held responsible for the use of any information contained herein.

The author, Suzanne Gasparotto, hereby grants to local goat publications and club newsletters, permission to reprint articles published on the Onion Creek Ranch website under these conditions: THE ARTICLE MUST BE REPRODUCED IN ITS ENTIRETY AND THE AUTHOR'S NAME, ADDRESS, AND CONTACT INFORMATION MUST BE INCLUDED AT THE BEGINNING OF THE REPRINT. We would appreciate notification from any clubs or publications when the articles are used. (A copy of the newsletter or publication would also be a welcome addition to our growing library of goat related information!)

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