When we first bought our 26 acre property, we had planned to have the entire parcel logged to make pasture for our goats. We postponed logging until winter to mitigate our environmental impact, but as winter drew closer, we started to reconsider…
When it comes to goats, 26 acres is a LOT of land! One acre can support 6-8 goats, provided that there is good quality forage. Clearing all 26 acres would mean that we could potentially carry over 200 goats, which we have no intention of doing. We envision our herd growing to 30-40 goats, but no larger. There’s no denying that large farms are efficient, but sometimes they lack adequate person to livestock ratios, and health issues go unnoticed, or the staff are too overwhelmed to address them. We never want to put ourselves in a position where we have so many animals that we can’t interact with each and every one of them on a daily basis.
So what do goats have to do with logging? Goats prevent regrowth. If we don’t have enough goats to stay ahead of the regrowth, the land won’t remain clear. We aren’t prepared to brush hog that many acres of rough terrain. Not to mention, having stumps removed is very expensive.
Because we don’t feel that we could keep up with maintaining 26 cleared acres, we have decided not to proceed with having the property logged by a logging company. Instead, we will slowly work toward clearing the lower portion of the land ourselves, processing the trees into firewood. We’ve already begun cutting where we plan to build our chicken coop. By spring, things should look noticeably different at our farm, although it may take us a few years to get everything cleared the way we want.