Section 2: Identification – goats
When to identify
Goats born on your holding must be identified:
- within six months of birth if the animals are housed overnight;
- within nine months of birth if the animals are not housed overnight (kept in extensive conditions); or
- before the animal moves from its holding of birth, if earlier.
Animals that die before the above deadlines do not need to be identified.
Identifiers are applied on the holding of birth and the type of identifier used depends on whether the animal is intended for slaughter within 12 months of birth.
The identifiers can be ear tags, tattoos, pastern tags or boluses.
EID is voluntary for goats, however, if they are born after 31 December 2009 and intended for export, they must be fully EID identified. If you choose to apply electronic identifiers to your goats you should follow the rules for sheep.
Identifiers for animals identified after 31 December 2009
Animals born or identified after 31 December 2009 and kept for breeding or beyond 12 months of age – these animals must be identified with two matching identifiers and the following applies:
Double identified: two non-electronic identifiers
- two ear tags with the same unique 12-digit animal number;
- an ear tag and a tattoo with the same unique 12-digit number (UK code and herd number on one ear, individual animal number on the other. The tattoo can go across both ears);
- a bolus and an ear or pastern tag (the tag must be black) with the same unique 12-digit number; or
- an ear tag with a pastern tag with the same unique 12-digit number.
Or, in the case of animals intended for slaughter within 12 months of birth:
- one single tag with herdmark only printed on the tag (slaughter tag).
The herdmark on the tag must be that of the holding where the animal was born, unless the tag is a replacement applied on a subsequent holding. There is one exception to this:
- when an animal is born on common grazing in a Crofting Township, you should use the herdmark of the home holding.
For all other provisions relating to the identification of goats (where to get ear tags and identification numbers through to upgrading slaughter lambs to breeding animals) please refer to Section 1, pages 6-10.
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