IVF Introduces the Nigerian Dwarf Goat Breed to the UK

IVF Introduces the Nigerian Dwarf Goat Breed to the UK

Stacey and Steven Briggs, owners of Windmill Farm Park in Leicestershire, have introduced the Nigerian Dwarf Goat breed into the UK through innovative IVF techniques.

The owners of Windmill Farm Park in Leicestershire have, through innovative IVF, introduced the Nigerian Dwarf Goat breed into the UK. Known as the World’s smallest Dairy Breed, the new Nigerian Dwarf Kid was born at Windmill Farm Park on March 14th 2024.

At just 22 cm tall, he is expected to grow no more than 60 cm, a third smaller than his standard UK dairy goat cousins. Extremely cute, he is already a firm favourite of the livestock team at the Farm.

With other Nigerian Dwarf Goats located in America and Australia, this is a huge step forward for the breed, which has only been made possible through the movement of frozen embryos.

Steven and Stacey love rare breeds with Steven growing up surrounded by animals at Windmill Farm. Stacey’s interest in the Nigerian Dwarf Goats started soon after she found out she was intolerant to cow’s milk in 2010.

She was surprised the World’s smallest milking goat didn’t exist in the UK. The only way to reintroduce the breed was to bring over frozen embryos to implant. Given their passion for animals, it only made sense for them to choose this project over a big wedding.

A pygmy goat feeding from its mother

Stacey said, “It’s been a rollercoaster of emotions. After many challenges, we implanted nine embryos into our six Boer goats in October and scanning in January revealed that we had one successful pregnancy. We have had our arms, fingers, and toes crossed since then and were relieved when a healthy baby boy was born on March 14th, 2024. His surrogate Mum, Myrtle, is doing a brilliant job of looking after him. She is absolutely besotted.”

In addition to being the World’s smallest dairy breed, the Nigerian Dwarf is also known for its excellent quality milk. Not only is it richer in buttermilk than the larger breeds, but it can also produce a substantial amount for its size.

The frozen embryos started their journey from the United States on July 10th, 2023, following over 18 months of planning and paperwork. Clearing UK customs on August 4th, 2023, they were then held in a UK storage centre until October 25th, 2023, when nine embryos were implanted into six Boer goats.

The kid enjoying a walk in the grass

The mother and baby are doing well, but the kid is not currently on show to visitors for biosecurity reasons. Once he is a little older, he will be moved to the public areas of the Farm Park. It is hoped that when he grows up, he will become a dad and enrich the dairy breeds in the UK.

Windmill Farm Park is a children’s Farm open to the public in Kibworth Harcourt, Leicestershire. The animals are at the heart of their farm park, and visitors are encouraged to get up close and interact with 30 rare and native animal breeds.

Alongside outdoor adventure play, a wooden indoor play area and Brian’s Wood, the Farm offers fantastic days out in the peaceful South Leicestershire Countryside.

Visitors wanting to find out more should visit https://windmillfarmpark.co.uk.

The full address is Windmill Farm, Kibworth Harcourt, Leicestershire, LE8 0PR. Visitors are encouraged to buy tickets online for the best prices.

The mother looking lovingly at the kidIVF Introduces the Nigerian Dwarf Goat Breed to the UK 2

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