January 27, 2015 10:20 UTC

learningenglish

Do It Yourself: Raising Angora Goats

An Angora goat at a farmer's market in the state of Maine
An Angora goat at a farmer's market in the state of Maine


This is the VOA Special English Agriculture Report.

(SOUND)

Has anyone ever tried to get your goat? To "get your goat" is an expression. It means to make you mad. A good friend might tell you: "Don't worry about what that person said. He was just trying to get your goat."

But there are plenty of good reasons to get a goat -- and not just for milk or meat. The animals can help control weeds. They can be friendly with children and adults. And they can make money with their hair.

Cashmere goats produce cashmere. Angora goats produce -- no, not angora. Angora fiber comes from rabbits. Angora goats produce mohair. Mohair is used to make clothing, carpets and other products.

The goats came from the Anatolian plains. Their name comes from the Turkish city of Ankara. The Mohair Council of America says the first Angora goats arrived in the United States in eighteen forty-nine. Seven females and two males were imported.

Today the United States is one of the world's leading producers of mohair. The other top sources are South Africa and Turkey. Ninety percent of the mohair from the United States comes from Texas.

An adult Angora can produce as much as seven kilograms of hair each year. The value of the coat depends on the age, size and condition of the goat. As Angoras get older, their hair becomes thicker and less valuable.

The goats need their mother's milk for the first three or four months. They reach full maturity at about two years. But even then they are smaller than most sheep and milk goats.

Cashmere goats are usually larger than Angoras. Cashmere goats can grow big enough to be kept with sheep and cattle.

The outer hair of the animal is called guard hair. Behind it is the valuable material on a cashmere goat. Some farmers just comb their cashmere goats to remove the hair. But if the goats do get a haircut, it often happens when they would naturally lose their winter coat, between December and March.

Angora goats generally get their hair cut twice a year, in the spring and fall. Owners do it themselves or hire a professional shearer. An Angora without a coat can get cold. So it may need to be kept extra warm for about a month after shearing.

And that's the VOA Special English Agriculture Report. To read, listen and learn English with our stories, go to voaspecialenglish.com. You can also find captioned videos of our program at the VOA Learning English channel on YouTube. I'm ____________.

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Elaine
05/09/2012 6:11 AM
I want to get a lovely goat at home after reading...


by: Betty
05/09/2012 4:56 AM
As this radio says,goats are our friend.They are friendly with both children and adult and make money for us by the way even sacrificing their coats in winter.But you know maybe they are not willing to be sheared just for that they must make a living by human's feeding or they don't have ability to protest theirself from the invading. Therefore they bare it and alive...So try your best to treat them as a friend.


by: Yoshi
05/09/2012 4:01 AM
" Get your goat " seems similar to " make someone go nuts"
I understand goats are very varuable not only for milk and meat, but also for hair. If I lost my goats in Anatolian plains, I will have a lot of difficulties in dayly life and go mad !?


by: kronick
05/09/2012 1:15 AM
cliff, i can get u a goat!


by: zeng xiaoqing
05/08/2012 11:24 PM
can you show me how to douw load?


by: cliff
05/08/2012 2:22 PM
Very interesting! I'd like to get a goat rather then a dog, and maybe I can teach my goat watch the door...

Learn with The News

  • Japan Hostage

    Audio Hostage Crisis Could Divide Japan over Military Plan

    Japan says the government is working with Jordan to secure the release of a Japanese cititizen. The Islamic State militant group is holding Kenji Goto hostage, but claims to have executed another Japanese hostage. The hostage crisis will likely increase divisions among the Japanese public. More

  • Detroit Auto Show 42

    Video Cars Making a Comeback at North American Auto Show

    The 2015 North American International Auto Show took a test drive in the U.S. city of Detroit, Michigan. It was the first major international car show in the U.S. Automobile manufacturers from around the world presented over 500 models, gas, electric, luxury, performance and concept vehicles More

  • Audio Chinese Civilians Guarding North Korean Border Areas

    Chinese media have reported several beatings and killings near the China-North Korea border. They blame North Koreans for the crimes. To protect the area, media reports now say that Chinese authorities are asking civilian patrols to guard their towns and villages near the border. More

  • Audio Obama Attends India's Republic Day Parade

    Mr. Obama was the first U.S. president to attend the event, which celebrates India’s first constitution as an independent state. The election results are likely to place Greece in conflict with the E.U. and international creditors. Deadly violence in Ukraine. Malaysia Airlines website hacked. More

  • Customers drink coffee as they read newspapers at the Tamoka coffee bar in Ethiopia's capital Addis Ababa, September 16, 2013.

    Video Experts Decide Ethiopia Has the Best Coffee

    What makes Ethiopian coffee the best? International coffee experts travel the world to find the best tasting cup of coffee, however they keep returning to Ethiopia. The country has an export revenue of more than $840 million a year from coffee to 120 countries. More

Featured Stories

  • Video Is There a Better Way to Track Passenger Planes?

    New technology could help to more closely follow passenger airplanes, and find them when they crash; international group to meet next month to discuss changes. Airline industry leaders and regulators want to improve airplane safety. They want better, more dependable tracking devices. More

  • Obama

    Audio Has Obama Set the Message for the 2016 Campaign?

    “I have no more campaigns to run … I know because I won both of them.” Mr. Obama cannot run for president again – U.S. presidents may serve only two terms. But some observers say his most recent State of the Union message on the middle class sounded like a campaign speech. More

  • American Sniper

    Video With Oscar Nomination, 'American Sniper' Stirs Debate

    The movie is based on a book by Navy SEAL Chris Kyle. He is considered the deadliest marksman in the history of the United States military. The film explores how war can affect a soldier's mental and emotional health and stirs a debate on social media over its message. More

  • Designers work at computer stations at TechShop in the South of Market neighborhood in San Francisco, California, April 24, 2014

    Video TechShop Puts High-Tech Dreams Within Reach

    Members of TechShop use high-tech equipment to develop and produce ideas they have for inventions. Members are able to use costly machines including 3D modeling tools and laser cutters. Membership costs for TechShop start at just over $100 per month. | Science in the News More

  • .

    Video Rare, Important Art Is Now Only a Click Away

    The public has never seen the majority of works in the Smithsonian Institution's National Museums of Asian Art. Now they can be downloaded from the Internet -- in many cases for free. The Freer and Sackler Galleries worked for over 15 years to make digital copies of more than 40,000 objects. More

Practice Your Writing

Confessions of an English Learner blog
Confessions of an English Learner blog

 

 

 

Tell us About Our Programs