Goats are one of the most important animals that humans raise since they can provide meat, milk, and can also become a pet if trained well. You can find goats in almost every part of the world. Because goats are herd animals that will usually follow a leader, they are known to follow their masters around and can be easily herded and can also become pets. Goats have been herded for a long time and are known as one of the first animals that have been domesticated.
While most goats are tamed and friendly to humans and other animals, there are also goats that are wild. For places that don’t have much predators like New Zealand, Great Britain, and Australia, goats can become feral if they are left in the wilds for a long time.
Humans have been using different parts of goats for meat, milk, and clothing for thousands of years. Additionally, we also use the goat’s dung as a fertilizer for farming and fuel. During the medieval age, goat’s skin can be used for water pouches and bags.
Farmers and herders need to know what are the different types of predators that usually prey on goats. A lot of wild animals usually stalk goats and other mammals since they can be found in almost every part of the planet. Because this animal is herbivorous and can live in any place that has grass, most farmers and herders will not have a problem in trying to feed goats.
Since goats are prey animals, they have eyes facing outwards from different sides of the face. This is because goats need a wider view of their surroundings since they need to be alert and aware of any predators that might be stalking them.
Main Goat Predators
This predator is a cousin to wolves, dogs, and other canine species and is one as the most common predator of goats in the United States. Every year, coyotes are known to have eaten hundreds of farm animals and goats. As pack animals, coyotes will work together so that they will be able to trap their prey. This predator will usually use their sharp fangs to bite into the throat of goats which will kill them. Farmers will protect their farm animals from coyotes with guns.
In the United States, the population of coyotes is becoming larger every year, especially when the number of other predators is becoming lower. You will usually see coyotes in deserts and other warm parts of the United States.
2. Wild Dogs And Stray Dogs
While most dogs are trained and used to protect and herd goats, there are also some wild dogs that will hunt goats. Unlike predators that will hunt goats and other farm animals for food and sustenance, a pack of wild dogs can kill around 20 goats for fun.
In Korea, there are hundreds of stray dogs in the streets that are hungry and will almost eat anything. Compared to stray dogs, wild dogs are smarter when it comes to hunting down prey like goats.
This canine predator has been hunting goats and farm animals even before humans started to hard them. Wolves usually travel in packs and will rely on large numbers if they are trying to kill stronger prey. You will usually see wolves in colder parts of the world such as the United States, Canada, Russia, Japan, and other countries in Europe.
Wolves will usually look for animals that have more meat such as deer, elk, and sometimes even humans. But if they find that there is a stray goat that’s easy to kill, then they will take that opportunity.
This predator is quite small and will usually hunt small and slow animals. However, there are also some foxes that are large enough that they can take down a goat. This goat predators will usually go after the youngest part of a herd since they are the smallest in the group. There are also times where a goat will go after the mother of the kids (young goats) since she is still weak after giving birth.
Just like dogs, foxes will kill for fun. This means that even if there’s plenty of food around, foxes will still try to take down goats if there’s nothing else to do. Foxes can be hard to drive away since they are sly and nimble. Most of the time, they will attack herds at night when most goats are not able to see far.
5. Mountain Lions
Mountain lions are the largest predators of goats. Their size and weight mean they can easily take down any prey that comes close to them. Even though mountain lions will usually hunt alone, one is enough to kill a whole pack of goats.
But since mountain lions usually travel around mountains and far from tamed goats, a herd of wild goats will be able to defend themselves. Wild goats that reside in mountains tend to have larger horns which mean that they can defend themselves against mountain lions. Just like wolves, mountain lions will prefer bigger prey like elk and deer, but they won’t refuse a chance to eat goats.
It’s known that bears are quite large and can take down a whole pack of goats. While there are some species of goats that can defend themselves with their large horns, tamed goats have very little chances of surviving an attack of a bear.
A bear will usually use its front paws to tear off the skin and muscles of a goat, but the most powerful way it can kill an animal is with its powerful jaws which it uses to bite the goat’s neck with its razor-sharp teeth. When a bear is done eating a goat, what’s left is only bones and sometimes skin.
While most birds are smaller than goats, eagles and other birds of prey can easily kill a goat with a single strike with its talons. Some eagles are large enough that it will have a wingspan of around 3 meters wide and can carry a whole goat back to its nest. This predator of goats is so fast when hunting that it will only take a few seconds for it to swoop down and snatch a goat.
So if you’re going to be herding goats and protecting them, the best thing to do is put up a fence around where they will be grazing and staying. You can also use guardian animals like llamas, donkeys, and rams to protect your goats; these animals love to form a bond with their fellow goats.
I hope that this article on goat predators was helpful! If you are interested, visit the Animal Facts Page!