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18 Black Goat Breeds That Add Character To Your Herd

18 Black Goat Breeds That Add Character To Your Herd

Whether you want a well-mixed pasture of colorful goats or you’re going for an edgy gothic farm aesthetic, you have to meet these impossibly fun black goat breeds.

Some may have to be solid black for their breed standard, while others may be permitted to be different shades or colors (but at least some of the goats of each breed will be predominantly black). Let’s talk about them!

Anatolian Black Goats long haired goat breeds

Anatolian Black Goat

The versatile Anatolian black goat is a treasured companion to small farmers in Turkey, renowned for its triple-purpose capabilities.

With colors ranging from solid black or brown to light gray and pied, this hardy breed stands between 30 to 40 inches tall with an impressive weight of 150 pounds. Its long ears dangle beside their sweet faces as they graze. The thick undercoat insulates them against cold weather conditions with ease, making them ideal for northern homesteads.

There’s more here than meets the eye; each individual produces up to 3,000 pounds of milk (about 348.8 gallons) annually, which has made these goats highly attractive and economically viable options amongst many dairy breeders worldwide.

Attappadi Black Goat

Growing in the Palakkad district of India, Attappady black goats are not just a common breed– they serve as a lifeline to many amazing indigenous tribes.

Medium-sized with lean bodies and strong legs, these unique creatures have bronze eyes that peer out from beneath their backward-curving horns and long pendulous ears. With striking coal-black fur, they can reach up to 29 inches tall and weigh around 68 to 80 pounds as adults.

This hardy breed is resilient against many diseases yet produces limited milk. Farmers across Kerala rely on this “poor man’s cow” as a reliable source of income due to its superior quality mincemeat yet low-yield (but still important) milk production.

Australian Malaan Goat

As I’m sure you’ve already pieced together, the Australian Malaan goat was developed in Australia. They were officially recognized as a breed just 23 years ago, in 2000.

This strong and hardy breed has adapted to various brutal weather conditions. They are easily identified by their intense glossy black coats, slender “rangy” build, and strong, straight, horizontal backline.

The ‘Mel’ part of its name comes from melanin with an additional hint to Saanen thanks to the ‘aan’ suffix– believed by some experts as originating from a Saanen buck imported back in 1943.

Known for being both intelligent and highly resistant to parasites or diseases, these goats have become one of the most popular in Australia. As you can imagine, they are adept at handling hot climates, both in dry and humid regions.

beetal goat standing on ledge

Beetal Goat

Beetal goats, hailing from the Punjab region of India and Pakistan (also known as Lahori goats!), bring a vast array of advantages to their keepers.

Standing at 28-35 inches tall and weighing 88-132 pounds each, these majestic animals boast large strong bodies with pendulous ears, long twisted horns with coats available in black, red, white or pied.

Not only do they produce up to 4 pounds of milk (about a half gallon) per day, but they can also thrive on just about anything edible. They don’t need a lot of special care of feed to thrive and be strong producers, making them ideal economical, no-fuss options.  A nice perk of the Beetal goat is that they are quite able when it comes to adapting to different climates!

Finally, Beetal goat skins have been tanned into many exquisite luxury kinds of leather, including suede, velour, and chamois, making them truly indispensable among livestock farmers around the world. If you like mohair and goat fiber, be sure to check out these 25 long-haired goat breeds.

black bengal goats laying on a rock

Black Bengal Goat

Originating from the northeastern regions of India, Black Bengal goats are a special and integral part of Bangladeshi culture. It’s estimated that they make up 90% of the goat population in west Bangladesh.

Characterized by their small but tight body structure and diminutive horns and legs, these docile animals come in a variety colors such as black, white, brown or grey fur coat.

Males weigh about 66 pounds while females 33 to 44 pounds, they prefer living off little attention yet managing impressive resistance against many diseases even under harsh environments or dry climates. It only takes 12 to 15 months for them to reach sexual maturity too, have 3 to 4 kids per birth, and usually give birth twice a year.

This makes them the perfect livestock animal for high quality meat production in even the toughest areas.

They are poor milk producers, but that is absolutely mitigated by their abundance in fertility,  “easy keeper” characteristics, and good quality meat. Their hides are pretty good for making leather too, which is just another perk.

british alpine goat

British Alpine Goat

In the early 1900s, dedicated British farmers created a hardy hybrid by blending together Alpine goats from Switzerland with the native English stock. The resulting breed was named the British Alpine goat. This new breed is able to stand up to cold climates with ease and is famed for its impressive size. They stand between 33 to 37 inches tall at maturity.

These pretty creatures sport flashy, glossy coats in solid colors, usually black and brown, but with distinct “swiss” cream or white markings on their face or legs. These markings will likely fade with sun exposure and aging. They are rangy, hardy goats that have a vast array of personalities. You never know what you’ll get until you meet each individual because they are all so different in temperament.

These super goats are not only attractive field ornaments but also extremely productive milking animals. Most produce 3-4% fat content and give up to two gallons of milk a day for about a year and a half after kidding.

They do prefer temperate conditions over areas of high humidity. Introduced into Australia back in 1958, these talented newcomers have been upgraded by crossbreeding them to Toggenburg & Saanen goats.

Damascus Goats laying around

Damascus Goat

The Damascus goat is an impressive breed of domestic goats with a long and fascinating history. Native to the Middle East, these animals have been brought up in herds for centuries, even being exported by British traders during the 19th century.

They were eventually taken to Cyprus, where they continued breeding until their name became synonymous with this region, ‘Damascus.’ They are popularly used for milk production and are often also referred to as Aleppo, Baladi, Chami Halep, or Shami. They hold a lot of cultural significance in many regions and languages, which is why they have so many names across so much land.

Its size and Nubian type make it an impressive sight, while its range of colors – from red to brown to pied, black, or grey, adds beauty to its resume.

The long hair gives this species added charm, but what really sets them apart are their large necks and legs in comparison with relatively small heads! Bucks tend to be even more regal or distinguished in appearance than does due to their larger frames and heavier weight.

garganica goat eating flowers in a meadow

Garganica Goat

From the wild and rugged Gargano peninsula in Puglia, Italy hails an ancient breed of goat: The Fulva Lucchese or ‘Garganica’.

With sturdily built bodies, and short legs setting them at 29 inches for does and 33 inches for bucks, these hardy goats proudly crown their heads with distinctly large horns!

A thick coat comes adorned with vivid hues of black, brown, or chestnut.

These dual-purpose goats are ideal for homesteaders who want milk and meat from the same herd. In Italy, they are used for making muscisca, a traditional cheese that is unique to the Gargano region of Italy.

Unfortunately, their numbers are falling and fast. The latest report says there are fewer than 800 Garganica goats left, labeling them as “endangered”.

black lamancha goat

LaMancha Goat

In the 1950s, Eula F. Frey, made history when she set out to create a special breed of goat native to Oregon, right here in the United States (it’s the only goat developed in the US).

Enter now the very iconic LaMancha!

This beloved dairy breed is widely recognized for its gentle temperament and extraordinary milk production capability, producing up to two gallons per day!

Distinguished by their varied coat colors, such as black, white, brown, or gold, with two types of ear shapes (1-inch gopher ears & 2 inches elf ears), these hardy goats stand between 28 to 30 inches tall and at around 130 to 150 pounds each. Love dairy goats? Check out these other cool dairy goat breeds.

Marwari Goat

The Marwari goat, originating from the state of Rajasthan in India, has an unmistakable and unique appearance. Sporting a shaggy coat usually presented as black with possible brown or white markings along its frame, they reach heights between 27-29 inches while weighing 70-92 pounds on average.

Both sexes have horns, though the bucks tend to have larger horns than females.

The long drooping ears give them their characteristic look that definitely sets it apart from other breeds.

Bred mainly for milk and meat production, in addition to being hardy animals capable of surviving extreme conditions, these goats can produce up to 2 pounds (about a quarter of a gallon) worth of high-protein milk a day.

Murciana Granadina Goat

The Murciano Granadina goats are a unique and hardy breed, native to the semi-arid regions of south Eastern Spain. These resilient creatures can be found in places like Almeria, Granada, Murcia and Alicante.

While their strong build with short but thin hair is typical throughout the flock; bucks generally have horns ornamented by longer tresses while does possess uniform and well-structured udders that help produce high-quality milk. Their milk holds high levels of protein as well as fat content.

Small farmers use Marciana Granadina goats to their advantage, they are cost-effective animals who do a great job of turning wild forage and wasted vegetation into milk and an extra income source.

black nigerian dwarf goat next to a schnauzer

Nigerian Dwarf Goat

Nigerian Dwarf goats are quickly becoming a popular pet and American homesteading asset due to their miniature stature, friendly personalities, and vibrant colors.

As the smallest of all dairy goat breeds, they require much less space than other species, and they are remarkably patient and gentle, so even young children can easily handle them.

The U.S Department of Agriculture has approved these small critters as eligible livestock for 4H/FFA youth projects too, which has largely contributed to their popularity in North America. Here are some other heritage goat breeds that are commonly used in FFA and 4-H programs and shows.

With their compact, petite frames and deep sweet milk production capabilities of up to two quarts a day, Nigerian Dwarf goats are the perfect choice for smaller homesteads. Boasting higher butterfat percentages of 6 to 10% (that’s double or triple many other breeds), these gentle creatures encompass everything you might want in an animal companion while still having enough capacity to provide creamy dairy products.

Standing between 17 to 21 inches tall for does or 21 to 23 inches for bucks and wethers, the ideal breed weight is around 75 lbs.

oberhasli goat

Oberhasli Goat

Oberhasli goats have a long and storied history, originating in Switzerland’s mountainous landscape.

They come with two distinct appearances too. Those from Graubünden can typically be seen sporting horns, while the Oberhaslis from Brienz and Bern are naturally hornless (or ‘polled’). This latter type of goat is believed to be behind today’s American line of these Swiss natives.

The American ideal of the Bernese Oberhasli goat is distinct and unique: a medium-sized animal with an elegantly deep chest, square face, alert ears, shorter legs, and wider body.

A tell-tale sign that you might just have yourself one of these charmers? Look out for those distinctive wattles; only the bucks will have beards.

black Osmanabadi Goat

Osmanabadi Goat

From their beginnings in the Osmanabad district of Mumbai, India, to now being found throughout north-eastern Karnataka state and beyond.

The hardy Osmanabadi goat is a dual-purpose breed beloved for its cost-effectiveness as both milk producers and good meat animals.

They are mostly black with occasional white patches on their ears or neck. This medium to large-sized animal stands between 28 and 30 inches tall at maturity, while ideally weighing 70 to 74 pounds.

Durable enough to survive drought conditions while resisting many common diseases, they are an excellent economical breed choice, especially for those in the southern portion of the United States.

black pygmy goats baby pygmy on goats back

Pygmy Goat

The American Pygmy Goat has recently transitioned from a utility animal to a novelty backyard pet.

Pygmy goats are compact and sturdy with a broad, deep body frame. Their faces feature flat noses ending in round muzzles alongside their erect ears, wattles, and horns. The bucks are considerably heavier and stockier, in weight and appearance, compared to the does.

Most pygymies are predominantly all-black or partially black with some other color variations sprinkled throughout their coat. They can also be grey, brown, or roan, with a dorsal stripe and some face markings. They may have splashes of white anywhere on their body, especially the stomach and legs.

Bucks finish growing at 23 inches tall and sixty to eighty-six pounds; does top out at 22 inches tall, and fifty-three to seventy-five pounds heavy.

Spanish Goat

Spanish goats are a hearty, resilient breed of livestock originating from the Iberian Peninsula and introduced to the Caribbean Islands.

With their disease resistance and hardiness in dry climates, Spanish goats can withstand even harsh environments – traits that make them ideal for experienced owners. We mention that owners should be experienced because these goats are anxious, flighty, muscular, heavy, and very strong-willed. They are difficult to handle, and because of this, only experienced, confident goat keepers should consider adding them to their herd.

A large body coupled with long ears and backward-curved horns distinguish these animals. They come in colors such as black, dark red, white, brown, or gray. Spanish goats can weigh up to 250 pounds when fully grown (that’s very heavy for a goat).

Renowned by various names such as scrub goat, wood goat, brush goat, hill goat, and briar goat, this species is an interesting addition to any adept breeder’s farmstead.

Uzbek Black Goat

With origins in the Middle Eastern nation of Uzbekistan, Uzbek black goats boast impressive fleece structures. These goats are an accidental by-product of developing the Soviet Mohair Goats, commonly called Angoras, Soviet Wooly Goats, or “Cashgoras”. .

In spring their wool fibers shed profusely– up to 40% of it depending on their age– but not along their spine. All of this shedding happens in a mere five to ten days. The result is strange and striking, it’s hard to look away from these partially ‘naked’ goats.

This robust breed is similar to Don goats when it comes to production and physical properties; however a unique characteristic lies within its distinctive hue: pure, black wool!

So as you can imagine, the Uzbek Black goat is primarily raised for their mohair/wool. They are sheared once or twice a year, and the fibers are used for many textiles and garments.

Verata Goat

Known as the Toledo, Cabra Castellana, and Cabra de Los Montes de in their native Spain, Verata goats are bred primarily for both milk and meat production.

Though small to medium-sized with a max height of 27 inches when mature, they possess an impressive ability to thrive in harsh climates despite minimal care required from owners.

These handsome animals bear twisted horns atop short fur, ranging between rich black or brown hues.

As an added bonus, not only do these dual-purpose breeders provide great dairy products but they also have friendly temperaments that make handling them a breeze too! New goat enthusiasts should have success with them, even as they learn the ropes of homesteading and basic goat care.

Black Goat Breeds: Final Thoughts

Who knew that there were this many diverse goat breeds with black coats?

It’s never a good idea to purchase an animal based on appearance, however, thanks to the wide variety of goat breeds from around the world, it is completely possible for you to choose a color (in this case black) and then pick desired purposes and personality traits as a secondary thought.

Which goat breeds are your favorites?

Did we miss any black goat breeds?

Let us know!

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