The most critical part of any meat goat operation is the selection of a herd sire, a high quality buck can produce high quality offspring, even when mated with an average doe. Boer goats tend to gain weight at about the same rate as their sire, so a buck from a proven fast growing bloodline will command the highest price, as its offspring will tend to also be fast growers.
The primary market for slaughter goats is at weights of 15–36 kg, kids should reach marketable size at weaning age. The kid of a proven fast-growing sire might weigh 36 kg at 90 days, while the kid of a poor quality sire might weigh only 15 kg at 90 days. An average quality buck will initially be less expensive to purchase, however they can significantly undermine an operation’s long-term profitability.
Other criteria for a breeding buck include:
Most meat goats are raised on pasture. A goat with poor jaw alignment will be at a significant disadvantage when feeding on pasture; poor jaw alignment is not acceptable in a commercial herd sire.
Good feet and legs
Needed to move about the pasture. Hoof rot is a common problem for goats that live in high rain areas if the hooves are not clipped regularly.
Two well formed equal-size testes in a single scrotum: the main purpose of a buck is to breed does.
For breeding purposes, one buck is normally required for every 25-35 does. Under ideal conditions the ratio can be as high as one buck for every 50 does. Bucks are normally separated from the does except for when breeding is specifically intended. Often does are bred for six weeks every 8 months, resulting in three kid crops every two years.
Successful bucks must be able to survive on pasture. Pen-raised bucks will stay near their pen, while the does they are supposed to breed are out in the pasture.