1) What are your particular breeding goals for your herd, beyond a healthy herd that reflects the Kinder Breed Standard?
My purpose for breeding the Kinder goat was to breed a goat of good conformation and good udders and udder attachments that would also produce a good meat carcass.
2) What do you see as the general pros and cons of linebreeding?
I do not see any negatives. Linebreeding and inbreeding are the same with all animals, BUT there is one big difference with breeding Kinders. Here you are outcrossing two different breeds. When breeding a Pygmy and Nubian, you are breeding 50/50, and that will never change no matter the number of breedings, so how are you going to find any consistency here? It is simply the matter of trying to fool mother nature, of finding the good traits and determining where these good traits come from, then repeating the genetics of that goat over and over again in your lines. Looking for those good Nubian lines will probably be much easier than looking for good lines of the Pygmy. My first breeding for Kinders was strictly a shot in the dark, so to speak, because I did not know the genetics of that first Pygmy, but later I did much research and knew that I needed to go with a Pygmy that came from good milking lines and a breeder that was interested in good udders or a breeder that was interested in show wins. I did both! Alice Hall’s Pygmy lines were the ones that I searched for in my second Pygmy buck. I tried to use as many of the Gasconade Nubian lines that I could find because they are the more meaty of the Nubians. Harvey suggested this in his first evaluation here. Evaluations, this practice is the key to good breeding.
3) Please offer an example of a linebreeding you have chosen to do.
I will show E Lee for my example.
4) What was your reasoning behind this particular match?
Wanting to keep the Ruppel genetics strong in my lines. She evaluated as excellent! She had a good udder and milked well and her body conformation was very good. Her teat size made her easy to milk, which is very important in a Kinder. Concord also evaluated as excellent.
5) How did the offspring turn out? Did you get what you wanted?
Yes! I can see her all down the lines. Concord is her sire and her grandsire, and he comes from milking lines, and these lines have continued in my herd.
6) What traits will lead you to decide to cull an animal, and how does linebreeding affect your willingness to cull?
You must cull no matter the breeding – linebreeding, inbreeding or crossbreeding. No one is going to breed perfect animals, so those less perfect need to be culled, and this is where evaluations really are important. All breeders are barn blind, thinking all their animals are just wonderful. This is where an experienced person that has been schooled along these lines is needed to help evaluate what is good and what is bad in each animal. There are lots of long-time breeders that can help guide us, but it takes that trained individual to really see those positives and negatives in our herd. Most judges are good evaluators, but most judges that we see today do not understand the dual-purpose animal. There are many breeders out there that only want to breed the animal that suits them and not the animal that fits our scorecard and breed standard, and there are many judges that do not understand our dual-purpose goat, either.
7) How do you personally balance linebreeding with outcrossing and at what point do you decide to outcross?
After I got started, I outcrossed only with animals that I knew what their good traits were.
8) If you are also buying or breeding first gens, what are your strategies for introducing terrific new genetics that don’t derail the traits you have linebred to achieve?
I have very seldom ever outcrossed. When I did, it was usually from my breeding, where I knew both the Pygmy side and Nubian side. I always look for some of my genetics in an animal that I am going to buy. Those genetics may be back four generations, but I almost always make sure some are there. This is what makes having our database showing each of our Kinder goats genetics so very important. We can see all their bloodlines for generations back. May I end by saying that these are only my thoughts and how I bred Kinders. I am not schooled in genetics; however, I think genetics would be most fascinating to learn. Harvey Considine’s evaluations and linebreeding were my main tools for breeding the Kinder goat.
By Sue Huston