Introduction to The ANGBA Nigora Goat
The Nigora goat, a medium sized, multi-purpose breed (fiber, milk, companion) originated in the United States in the early 1990's. Early Nigoras contained a mixture of Nigerian Dwarf, white and colored Angora bloodlines, as well as some small Grade fiber goat breeding; today's Nigoras may also contain the bloodlines of registered "Swiss type" Mini Dairy breeds. The conformation, character and style of the modern Nigora should be that of a healthy, proportionate animal: It should exhibit a rectangular build, refinement, bone structure, substance and angularity typical of a well formed miniature dairy goat, while also producing three distinct types of fleece. The fleece varies between mohair and cashmere in character, with cashgora being a blend of characteristics between the first two types. The Nigora is being produced, and promoted, as a breed particularly suited for micro-eco niche business, Urban goat keeping, small homesteading, personal family use, and as pets. Their friendly dispositions, smaller size, and general ease of care also makes the Nigora suitable for children and prospective senior or special needs goat owners.
(WHAT A NIGORA IS AND IS NOT, VISUAL AID Coming Soon!)
Basic Information at a Glance:
Bloodlines/Breeding: Nigerian Dwarf Dairy Goats and/or Swiss Type Mini Dairy Breeds (i.e.: Mini Alpine, Mini Saanen, Mini Sable, Mini Oberhasli, Mini Toggenburg) crossed with any recognized Angora goat breed (i.e.: Commercial White, Colored Angora, or Navajo/Heritage Angora). ANGBA also has Grade and Breeding Stock classifications; All goats applying for registration must meet the ANGBA minimal Standard for general breed type and be free of disqualifiable faults and/or traits.
Height: The suggested height range for Nigoras is a minimum of 19" with a maximum of 29", measured at the withers (goats that meet the standard, yet are over or under height, will be taken into consideration on an individual basis.) For show purposes, goats that are slightly/fractionally over or under the ideal height of 19"- 29" will receive a minor fault; goats under or over 1 1/2 inch will be disqualified.
Ears: Ear set may vary being erect like the Nigerians and the Swiss type Mini Dairy breeds, open and dropped like the Angora, airplane (pointy and out to the sides), or pointed and drooping; unequal ears (one up, one down) are a minor fault in show animals but will not count against registration. Gopher or elf ears (a LaMancha trait) and long pendulous ears (a Nubian trait) are a disqualification for registration.
Eyes: Any color eyes are allowed: Gold, brown, blue, or a combination thereof. Odd eyed (one of each color) or marbled/bi-colored eyes (mixed eye color) is not faulted against.
Color/Markings: ALL colors and patterns found within the Nigerian, Angora, or Swiss type Mini Dairy breeds are allowed without preference or predjudice. (More info below).
Horns: Nigoras may be disbudded or remain horned by owner preference; Naturally polled Nigoras exist and are allowed by ANGBA.
Fleece/Fiber: The Nigora exhibits a predominantly "cashgora" type fleece which comes in three different styles:
''Type "A": (aka "Angora" Type) This type of fleece leans heavily toward the mohair characteristics of the Angora goat; some "Heavy" Nigoras may exhibit true mohair.
''Type "B": (aka "Blended" Type) This is the most common form of cashgora fiber, which is a combination of mohair and cashmere characteristics.
''Type "C": (aka "Cashmere" type) This fleece leans more toward cashmere fiber characteristics; some Nigoras (particularly "Light" Nigoras) may produce commercial grade cashmere.
Sub-Types include "A/B" and "B/C" for fleece that fall between types.
(More fleece info below).
Temperament: As a general rule, a Nigora should have a calm, amiable, laid back disposition and be neither aggressive nor excessively fearful when properly socialized.
Disqualification From Registration: Any goat exhibiting severe, heritable conformational defects which would effect it's ability to be a good breeding animal, and goats containing any of the following breeds: Meat specific goat breeds (i.e.: Boer, Kiko, Kinder, Spanish, etc.), Nubian or LaMancha of ANY size, and Myotonic breeds of any kind. (Direct cross to FULL SIZED Standard Dairy breeds, i.e. Offspring of Standard Swiss type Dairy x Angora, Nigora or "alternate fiber breed" goats, are not considered to be, nor registerable as, Nigoras.)
INFORMATION ON FLEECE & DEFINITIONS PERTAINING TO FIBER
Information provided courtesy of Sharon Chestnutt-- CAGR Founder,
CAGBA Registrar, breed and fiber judge, and breeder of CAGBA, ACAGR, and
AAGBA Angora Goats (Maroon text refers to Nigora fleece)
"The elements of a great mohair fleece are great luster, great handle, great character and style, and good length. Mohair is supposed to shine. The handle of a fleece is how it feels, generally how soft or silky it is. The style and character are the wave and twist and lock formation of the fleece, and how pretty it is.
In crosses of Pygmies or dairy goats and probably Nigerians, there is a range of resulting fleece types after several generations of breeding. Some produce fleeces that are very like mohair and all the quality descriptions of mohair apply. At the other end of the spectrum are cashmere type fleeces. Most smooth coated goats produce an undercoat that is short cashmere. Crossing with the angora can result in a goat that produces a "C" type cashmere fleece. Cashmere is defined as a goat fiber, less than 18 microns in diameter with a non lustrous, crinkly style and character. There should be a great deal of difference between the fine undercoat and the coarse outer coat in the fleece to allow separation. The third or "B" type fiber is somewhere in between cashmere and mohair [cashgora]. It may have some luster, is intermediate in length and fineness and there should be good separation between the fiber and any kemp or medulated fibers.
Fiber diameter - The most important price determining factor of fleece is the fiber diameter. [Angora] Kid fleeces command the highest prices because they are so fine and soft, however some of the first kid clip is lacking in luster and in lock definition. The fiber diameter increases as the animals get older and males tend to coarsen faster than females. The coarsest part of the fleece is the neck. Uniformity of fiber diameter and lock type over the whole body is important. Staple length - an angora goat ideally will grow a 6 inch fiber in 6 months. The staple will not necessarily be 6 inches in a fleece with lots of character. Both mills and handspinners can appreciate this length. Fleeces longer than 7” fill a specialty market and those shorter than 4’’ are not useable. B fleece types are typically 4-6 inches long and C types are 2-4 inches. [shorter type C fiber can be used in felting]
Style and character - Style refers to the twist in the staple while character refers to the wave or crimp. A balance between style and character is desirable [in Angoras. This also goes for Type “A” Nigoras.] Too little style and character lead to straight, or open, or fluffy mohair, which is undesirable. Too much character with too little style leads to flat, wavy staples, which in extreme cases, is known as sheepy fleece. Too much style can lead to tight ringlets, which are hard to process. Uniformity of lock type and well- defined locks are desirable. In B and C type Pygora and Nigora fleeces the style is generally seen only in the curl at the tip of the fleece. Neither of these fleece types forms well defined locks. [These are to be lofty, fluffy fibers; cloud like compared to typical Angora mohair or Type “A” Nigora fleece]
Luster - Mohair should shine. Very fine first kid fleeces, B and C type Pygora and Nigora, and very fine downy fleeces, do not have the luster usually associated with mohair [Type "A" &“B” show luster]. Fleeces that have no protective oils can be overexposed to the weather, and lose their shine. Lice take the luster out of a fleece.
Handle - Mohair should feel silky and the younger fleeces feel soft, as these are qualities handspinners prize. Adult fleeces will not be soft but they should not be “hairy”. The handle will vary with the "type" of fleece. A types will have a cool, silky mohair type feel. B and C types will be warmer and downier. [Suede like]
Yield - Yield is important to the handspinner primarily in terms of ease of washing. Very greasy or dirty fleeces are hard to wash and lose quite a bit of weight in the washing. A light coating of oil however keeps the fleece shiny and protects it from the weather. Pygora and Nigora fleeces are rarely greasy types.
Freedom from kemp - Kemp is a coarse guard hair like fiber. Kemp fibers tend to stick out of spun yarns and because they are coarse they are also scratchy. White kemp does not take dye well and colored kemp tends to be more heavily pigmented than the true fiber. Because they are over 60% hollow, kemp fibers tend to be more opaque than mohair. First kid fleeces may retain some shed kemp fibers as the birth coat of an angora is about 50% kemp. By three months of age the mohair fibers grow in and the kemp falls out, the fleece is about 92% mohair. The biggest problems in fleeces of angora crosses is the presence of kemp and other medulated fibers. Medulated fibers are those with a hollow core. B and C type fleeces typically need dehairing to remove these fibers although I have seen a few goats where the kemp has been virtually bred out.
Cleanliness - Handspinners are greatly concerned with the ease with which they may process and spin a fleece and so cleanliness is of primary importance.
Once your fleece is off the goat, it no longer matters what age or sex the goat was that grew it. What matters now is how fine is it and therefore what grade it is, and style, character, and handle are our best indicators here. How uniform and clean and lustrous is the fleece? Length and uniformity of length, and yield and weight of the fleece are also judging considerations. Kemp downgrades any fleece."
**[Commentary within brackets added by ANGBA ]
NIGORA COLORS AND PATTERNS
A Nigora may be any color and pattern found within the Nigerian Dwarf, Swiss type Mini Dairy Goat, and Colored Angora goat breeds. Any combination of colors and different patterns is possible. Solid colors include black, chocolate, gold, red, & white/cream.
Visual Chart of Nigora Colors/Patterns Coming Soon
Links to Swiss Type Mini Dairy Goat Colors and Patterns:
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"The ANGBA Nigora Goat- An American Original"
The ANGBA Nigora is the first breed of goat in the U.S.A. to be bred specifically as a Fiber Producing Dairy Breed of any size. Nigoras are not a "designer" breed but a breed being produced to fill a need and a niche for people seeking to downsize or get back to basics... folks who are interested in providing for their families in an Earth-friendly, sustainable way. Nigoras were not created to be a "commercial production" goat; the ideal Nigora's job is to fill the role of milk producer for the average family, produce a beautiful cashgora type fleece found desirable by fiber artists and handcrafters, and provide companionship to people of all ages.
Read on to learn more about this very special breed of goat...!
NIGORA BREEDING EXPLAINED
About F-Generation, Breeding Stock, and Grade Nigoras
"F-GEN" (FOUNDATION GENERATION) NIGORAS:
A 1st generation cross between a purebred Angora and a purebred Nigerian Dwarf, OR purebred (F6+) Swiss type Mini-Dairy goat, is called an "F1" and is considered a hybrid. (Nigoras retain a hybrid status until they reach the F6+ generation, then they are considered Purebreds.) F-Gen Nigoras from fully registered parent stock are classed as "Blue List" and F-Gen Nigoras from partially registered or unregistered (but otherwise purebred) parent stock are classed as "Red List" for record purposes. (The colors used below are for highlighting purposes and do not denote any classification).
PUREBRED NIGERIAN DWARF X PUREBRED ANGORA = F1
PUREBRED "SWISS TYPE" MINI DAIRY GOAT X PUREBRED ANGORA = F1
F1 X F1 = F2
F2 X F2 = F3
F3 X F3 = F4
F4 X F4 = F5
F5 X F5 = F6
F6+ = PUREBRED
If you mix generations the resulting offspring's generation will be the next highest generation of the lowest generation parent: For example...
F6 X F1 = F2
F5 X F2 = F3
F4 X F3 = F4
"BREEDING STOCK" CLASS NIGORAS:
Goats that are 75% Angora to 25%Nigerian or Swiss type Mini Goat breeding are considered "Heavy" Nigoras, while goats that are 75% Nigerian or Swiss type Mini Dairy Goat to 25% Angora are considered "Light" Nigoras. (Heavy and Light Nigoras are considered Gen "0" for breeding purposes.)
--Heavy Nigora x Heavy Nigora = "Heavy" Nigoras
--Heavy Nigora x Any F-Gen Nigora = "Heavy" Nigoras
--Heavy Nigora x Nigerian or Swiss type Mini Dairy = "Light" Nigora
(The offspring of a Heavy Nigora bred back to an Angora would effectively be considered a "Grade Angora", and be Gen "0")
--Light Nigora x Light Nigora = "Light" Nigoras
--Light Nigora x Any F-Gen Nigora = "Light" Nigoras
--Light Nigora x Angora = "Heavy" Nigora
(The offspring of a Light Nigora bred back to a Nigerian or Swiss type Mini Dairy goat reverts the offspring back to Grade status.)
--Crossing a "Heavy" Nigora x "Light" Nigora = an F1 Nigora.
RULES CONCERNING GRADE NIGORAS FROM "ALTERNATE FIBER BREEDING":
Other breeds (containing not less than 50%, and preferably 75+%) Angora breeding that may be used to produce Grade Breeding Stock Nigoras:
--F-Gen PBA Pygora (NPGA Pygmy x AAGBA Angora), crossed to a Nigerian or Swiss type Mini Dairy goat= Grade "Light" Nigora
--PBA Pygoras that are 3/4 Angora/1/4 Pygmy x with Nigerian or Swiss type Mini Dairy goat= Grade "Light" Nigora
--F-Gen PCA Goat (NPGA Pygmy x AAGBA or registered Colored Angora; or PCA x PBA Pygora) x to Nigerian or Swiss type Mini Dairy= Grade "Light" Nigora
--PCAs that are 3/4 Angora, 1/4 Pygmy x to Nigerian or Swiss type Mini Diary goat = Grade "Light" Nigora
--True Cashgora (from American, Canadian or Australian Cashmere breeds x Angora) x Nigerian or Swiss type Mini Dairy goat= Grade "Light" Nigora
-- True Cashgora that is 3/4 Angora, 1/4 Cashmere x to a Nigerian or Swiss type Mini Dairy goat = Grade "Light" Nigora
(NOTE: Nigerian/Pygmy hybrids with Nigerian characteristics (Considered Grade Nigerians)x Angoras= Grade F1 Nigoras)
WHICH FIBER CROSSES ARE NOT CONSIDERED GRADE NIGORAS:
The fiber influence in the Nigora breed is derived from Angora breeding, not that of the Cashmere goat, therefore the offspring of the following fiber crosses are not considered Grade Nigoras:
--Nigerian Dwarf X Cashmere = "Casherian" (contains no Angora breeding)
--Swiss type Mini Dairy goat x Cashmere = "Mini Cashmere" (contains no Angora breeding)
--F1 Pygora/PCA goat x Cashmere = "Pycazz" (50% Cashmere, 25% Pygmy, 25% Angora)
"Mini Cashgoras" (the offspring of Casherians or Mini Cashmeres x Purebred Angoras) have 50% Angora breeding and are eligible to be used in a Grade Nigora breeding program.
"Pycazz" with 50% or more Angora breeding may also be used in a Grade Nigora breeding program.
More Information (Dairy, Etc.) Coming Soon