Serpentinas Goats

The Herdade da Mata currently has fifty Serpentina goats and three males, all of which are listed in the Genealogical Register of the Serpentina goat breed. Female kids possessing the typical characteristics are kept for breeding. The males are sold for meat under the brand name "Cabrito Alentejano".

The whole production of Serpentina kid goats, from birth to sale, is supervised by the "Associação Portuguesa de Caprinicultores de Raça Serpentina".

Their coat is predominantly white with black markings along their spine, on their belly, inside their ears, around the eyes and down towards the snout, as well as on the lower part of their legs from the knee down. The Serpentina breed of goats, as is common with other breeds, resulted from cross-breeding between animals brought to the Iberian Peninsula in the distant past by people of various origins. Thanks to local environmental conditions and some morphological selection, they acquired strong homogeneous characteristics, eventually earning the status of breed.

Over the years, their name underwent some changes as the animals went from place to place and grew in number. At first, because their biggest concentration was in Spain, they were known as Spanish or Castilian goats. Later, due to their proximity to the border, the name changed to Raiana and, finally, as their numbers grew in the Serpa Mountains, they became known as the Serpentina goats and this is the name by which they are best known today.

The Serpentina Goat is considered to be in danger of extinction.