Arapawa Goat: Characteristics, Uses & Full Breed Information

The Arapawa goat is a dual-purpose breed of domestic goat raised for both meat and milk production. Actually Arapawa goat is a feral breed of domestic goat, and it is one of the rarest goat breeds in the world.

The breed was found isolated on the island of Arapawa in the Marlborough Sounds of New Zealand. The origin of the goat population on this island has often been associated with the expeditions of Captain James Cook. Historical records indicate that goats were released by Captain James Cook on the island in 1777.

The goats were released to the island as a future source of food and milk by the explorers. But according to the local lore, the present Arapawa goat is directly descended from those original goats that arrived in the eighteenth century during British colonization.

The goats are thought to be “Old English,” a common goat breed in Britain at the time of colonization. Arapawa goats were exported to the United States in 1993, and to the United Kingdom in 2004.

The breed is very rare today. According to the American Livestock Breeds Conservancy, the New Zealand Arapawa goat is critically close to extinction.

The breed is now being bred by a few enthusiasts in various places throughout New Zealand. Read more information about Arapawa goat below.

Arapawa Goat Characteristics

Arapawa goat is relatively a small breed of goat. It is actually smaller than modern dairy goat breeds. Arapawa goats come in a wide variety of colors and patterns. Common colors and patterns are brown, black, fawn and white.

The breed usually have distinctively patterned faces with many goats having badger stripes. They are colorful with distinctive markings and brown and black patchwork.
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The Arapawa bucks usually have widely sweeping horns, and the does have shorter and backward-pointing horns. The does on average weight about 27 to 36 kg.

And average body weight of the bucks is up to 57 kg. Info from The American Livestock Breeds Conservancy and photo from Wikipedia.


The Arapawa goat is a dual purpose animal. It is raised for both meat and milk production.

Special Considerations

Arapawa goats are very friendly animal. They are easily handled, and it’s very easy to raise or take care of them. They are non-aggressive animals and also good for raising as pets.

The does are excellent mothers, and they typically give birth to twins with little or no birthing difficulties. They are good for milk production, and also considered very good for meat. However, review full breed profile of the Arapawa goat in the following chart.

Arapawa Goat | Breed Profile

Breed Name Arapawa
Other Name None
Breed Purpose Milk & Meat
Breed Size Small to Medium


Buck About 27 to 36kg
Doe About 57 kg
Horns Yes
Climate Tolerance All Climates
Coat Color Many
Good for Stall Fed Not Sure
Rarity Rare
Country/Place of Origin Arapaoa Island

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