History of the Breed
Established in Australia by - PAUL HAMILTON
HISTORY OF THE IMPORTATION OF GOAT GENETICS INTO AUSTRALIA
The Paul Hamilton Story (Importation/Breed Founder)
From about the year 2000 DAFF, used to be known as AQIS had complied a protocol that if followed would allow the import of goat genetics from the USA. How simple then could it be then to follow the instructions set down by a group of policy making vets representing the OIE health standards. Australia set down the rules and the USDA just needed to able to state they could abide by them.
n 2004 the process was put to the test by an innovative Angora Breeder, Helen Ypma NSW. While the import was marginally successful in importing semen, the embryo compliment proved to be unviable.
While Helens import was always going to be expensive she never anticipated how costly, wasteful and the level of mental anguish she was to injure.
There were two main problems, one following the Scrapie requirements and two finding technicians capable of performing quality of artificial breeding work. While the men in white coats said they can collect semen and embryos from goats, then cryopreserve them, it was far from the truth.
Australia and NZ have been the leaders in artificial breeding techniques in Sheep and Goats.
While the USA may be catching up,it is only through the reference back to Australian , Kiwi and South African expertise.
I flew to Texas in 2011 after months of research locating animals and dealing with potential quarantine establishments.
Unfortunately to find an established cattle export facility that would deal with housing and exporting goat genetics was impossible.
Eventually I had to settle with an organization in College Station. After refining their handling, collecting techniques and supplying them equipment, they only managed to successfully delivered one shipment out of three to Australia in
a 6 month period in 2012. The cost and stress was close to unbearable.
The following year in 2013 after consolidating contacts I traveled back to the USA to research a more trustworthy quarantine organization and develop relationships with breeders of dairy, mini and meat goats.
In 2013 I traveled to Tennessean, Oklahoma and Texas in order to again establish connections and enter a new team of bucks into an Oklahoma quarantine station. You would be forgiven for thinking that by now i would know what was around the next corner.
In September the same year I attended the Dallas State Ag Show. Being a 'novel' Australian it was easy to make contact with breeders in numbers. It was going great until one breeder forced me to admit all donors were to be necropsied (destroyed and their brain stem analysed) to test for presence of scrapie. Maybe it was a crowd response, but quickly I was accused of misrepresentation and escorted out of the show barn.
With my tail between my legs and my whole purpose being challenged I Grey Hound bussed it to a little town in the east of Texas where I based myself for the next 10 weeks. I was successful in coordinating the import of some mighty fine USA goat genetics. The shipment arrived in Australia May 2014.
Against popular wisdom I flew back to the USA in Sept 2014:
The thought was to benefit from the contacts and technicians I had nurtured over the past 4 years. Surely it must get easier. The fall and start of winter was one of the coldest spells on record. Snow ice rain when it was 40 degrees
the previous year. Most the donors endured the conditions, while others were lost to the program. If health requirements are satisfied and the transport is adequate I expect an additional import of genetics by April 2015.
Mini breeders need not feel threatened by the imported genetics but should see it as a tool to never be concerned about height in their breeding program. A selected 50% buck will easily come under the height requirement, and should produce
kids that qualify as minis.
The doe line I am using originated from the Late Mr Rod Omar from WA. Rod was suffering terminal cancer and being happy with AI results we achieved together, asked if I would continue on his 20 year breeding program.. His animals carried stunning colour patterns, plenty of bone and good structure.
They have proved to be good mother's with tough composition. It is observed kids from the solid colour pygmy sires are tending to lose the mothers colour as I approach purity. Australian pygmy breeders will have the option to infuse pygmy size into their minis, breed a composite maintaining as diverse colour range as possible, or adopt the USA standard and breed their type of goat.
There is no doubt over time Mini Goat breeders will establish the Australian version of the African Pygmy goat, and I hope you enjoy the journey.
I want to briefly thank my wife for her patience, tolerating my absence for over a year, and opportunities lost while I pig headedly strive to achieve my objectives.
Written by Paul Hamilton
The MGBA Breeders who have had the opportunity to work with Paul and who have been given access to this new genetics would like to sincerely thank him for this fantastic opportunity. We look forward to working with Paul as a highly skilled Artificial Breeding Technician over the months and hopefully years to come.
Foundation breeders -
The MGBA list of recongise Australian Pygmy Goat Foundation breeders with the MGBA. All have contributed to the development and/or establishment of the breed in Australia. If you are an MGBA member and have pygmy goat kids you have bred and registered with the MGBA and have fullfilled the above criteriaplease contact the MGBA Secretary with your application details for approval.
(Pygmy importer/breeder) TRINITY STUD, Paul HAMILTON - VICTORIA
(Pygmy breeder/ Pygmy Subcommittee member/ worked with importer) KAWINKIDINK STUD, Sam DOYLE-COX - VICTORIA - The MGBA would like to acknowledge work put in by Kawinkidink for the intitial establishment of this breed.
(Pygmy breeder// worked with importer/ set original breed standards/grading/organised DNA for the breed) PATONA PARK, Sue LUDWIG - QUEENSLAND. The MGBA would like to acknowledge work put in by Patona Park for the initial establishment of this breed.
(Pygmy breeder/worked with importer) KAZOO STUD, Karyn ATKINSON - QUEENSLAND
(Pygmy breeder /Pygmy Subcommittee member) RIVERSTONE STUD, Seleena Nichols- VICTORIA
(Pygmy breeder /Pygmy Subcommittee member ) PLUMBAGO STUD, Christine FALCONER - WESTERN AUSTRALIA
(Pygmy breeder/ /Pygmy Subcommittee member ) SPRINGFIELD FARM, Karen BOWRON - WESTERN AUSTRALIA
(Pygmy breeder /Pygmy Subcommittee member) MINI-LEE STUD, Elizabeth and Brenton LEE- QUEENSLAND
(Pygmy breeder /Pygmy Subcommittee member) WINDY RIDGE Sharon PARKYN - QUEENSLAND
Foundation breeders the early days...
Sam Doyle-Cox at kawinkidink Stud 2015
We had been breeding Australian miniature goats for a numbers of years and fell in love with the stocky,cobby body shape that some if the Australian minis exhibit and strove to reproduce this in our own herd. Drawing on inspiration for our eventual stud goals through browsing the internet and drooling over the beautiful Pygmy goats in the US and UK.
After much correspondence, in 2013 and early 2014 with Paul Hamilton we purchased our first two 50% Pygmy bucks when we visited Paul’s property with Karyn Aitkinson, We were a couple of VERY excited crazy goat ladies that day!
Later that year Paul entrusted us with his entire herd of does who were in kid to his precious US pygmy semen while he worked for three months in the US and for sometime after his return . Twenty plus does kidded on our property & we also baby sat several treasured in kid Australian 50% pygmy does who were being kept safe when others had been stolen from Pauls property. All the while we had to keep secret that we had pygmy goat genetics at our stud. It was SOOOOO hard as we were bursting with excitement
Our payment was a beautiful little 50% doe we called Winsome pixie and the opportunity to be the first stud in Australia to purchase 100% pygmy semen from Paul. We waited until Winsome Pixie was ready to be inseminated and the result was 75 % triplets! One buck Kawinkidink Gus Gus and two does Kawinkidink Ta Da and Kawinkidink Pocket Rocket.
We have worked hard along side Sue Ludwig, Simone O Brien, Lin Hoare and Karyn Aitkinson to have these beautiful little animals part of the MGBA.
It was an amazing feeling to be the organisers of the first ever Australian Pygmy goat show back in February 2015.
Since then our little herd of amazing Australian Pygmy goats has grown and developed.
We are so grateful to be foundation Australian Pygmy Goat breeders and can’t wait to see how the breed develops.
Exciting times ahead!
Karyn Atkinson at Kazoo Stud 2015
I am sure every miniature goat breeder out there has trawled the internet at some time pawing over the gorgeous pictures of Pygmy goats and Nigerian Dwarfs, wishing, you could have some of those please.
For me the Pygmy was the one! I just loved looking at all those beautiful pictures of them.
Back in January 2012 there was a hint in the air that there would be some Pygmy semen coming into Australia, what excitement that caused!. However, nothing more was heard about it until I was invited to judge at the Berwick show- Victoria back in February 2014 where I met Sam Doyle-Cox the show manager and fellow Miniature Goat Breeder.
Sam had come into contact with Paul Hamilton who had a display there at the Berwick show of some of his first 50% Pygmy doelings. Sam told me what she knew about the Pygmy's and Paul. So of course, I went and had a look at Paul's display, had a chat with him, my excitement just exploded, they were finally here, Yesss!!!!!.
I couldn't stop talking about them and bugged Sam to bug Paul to let us come and visit him so we could see the rest of his babies before I had to fly back to Queensland.
I thank both Sam and Paul for making that visit possible and I can tell you all, a lot of excited fast talking ensued about the Pygmy's that morning.
I consider myself so lucky to have been allowed to purchased two 50% bucklings from Paul's precious stock. EmojiEmoji Emoji Yippeee! Yahoooo!
I say thankyou to Paul Hamilton for "pig headedly" (as he put it) sticking to his dream and bringing the Pygmy to Australia.
I think all miniature goat breeders can only benefit from the genetics Paul is bringing in.
I look forward, with great excitement, to watching what unfolds in the future and I can't wait to have more and more of those little "Pygmys" jumping around in my paddocks.