Tuesday, May 25, 2010

some of the kids looking for new digs

Here are a couple of pictures of two of the doelings we've had some interest in. I'd be delighted for them to find some good homes, and get Boomer's genetics out there for some other producers. That will be a true test of his mettle, and it will take a few years for us to really know how those bloodlines play out. First is Magnolia, who is a triplet doeling out of a older doe we bought at BBM's dispersal sale. She has raised many sets of triplets, and is a tough old goat. Her buck kid is now at the house with the other buck kids, and although he is a triplet and a month younger than the 75% twins we brought home at the same time, he is a little taller, so we'll see how he develops muscle wise now that he is on his own. Here is a picture or two of Magnolia. Please excuse the ears in picture two.

Although the next doeling is very similar in color, this is Indy's 100% NZ doeling "China Doll." She is much younger, and won't be ready to wean for a couple months.

Here is a picture of all three kids in that field - PB twins out of "34" and of course little "China Doll", the youngest on the farm.

And here is a closer picture of "34's" doeling "Ginger."

And Ginger's twin brother, who isn't all the way named yet. I'm partial to "Freeway" but for $400 you can name him anything you'd like and put him in the back of your truck. He's a good looking little buck, and we're sure impressed with his mama's mothering abilities...

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Here are a couple of pictures of the two older does we bought - both born in April of 2009. The red doe in the middle of the two new ones is miss Louisianna, who believes she is the center of the universe. We purchased her from Goat Hill late last year and Chuck picked her up with the Boulder Hills does we purchased bred to Wild Bill (son of Terminator XX). Louisianna is by Iron Horse and out of Tay W48, a daughter of Goldmine I and a Generator daughter. The two new does are, on the left, DSW W3 Jesse, who is by Boulder Hills S77 and out of JFK Tranquility and on the right is GHK Y 145, also by Iron Horse and out of MGR Lightin's Lady P21, by Sunboy Waco 139 and out of Victoria Farm Puddin. I normally keep new goats to the farm in their own area at our house for a much longer time, but these does came in acting strong, and we needed an area to put the weanling bucks, so we did put these girls together. Louisianna is enjoying being able to mash someone around, since the Mama goat she was previously kept with was definitely dominant to her.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Just a picture or two...

Just a couple pictures of the new babies. All three of them are just happy to be here. Actually, I think they would be happy to be anywhere. The larger does are still a little subdued, but it is hard to garner a lot of attention when you have to compete with a trio of happy little weanlings, so they have only had some Bovi Sera to boost their immune system and we are transitioning their food, but most of our attention is on the little girls. Of course, the weather has been unseasonably cool and very rainy and damp since they arrived, but we always seem to bring home goats in the rain. Amazing how that works, since we had been without rain for weeks. The doelings are settling in well. The larger two - brown and black, are the Iron Horse/Purdy cross kids, so they are heavily Tasman Zorro. The smaller doeling is also by Iron Horse and out a daughter of Nick and Tasman Temptress, so she has more in common with Boomer.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Best of the Midwest Sale

Well, Chuck is on the way back home (accompanied by our nephew who went along to assist and spend a little time in St. Louis) with our five new does. We only bought two at the actual sale, and were having two doelings delivered there from Goat Hill, and they had brought one of the other Purdy doelings with them in error, and since they aren't going to make any more of Purdy's kids (she died this spring), we bought her too. Overall, I am happy with what we are bringing home. I wish we had more space and money and time, because I would have loved to have gotten some of the older does being offered from the original Kiko bloodlines, but such was not to be.

I had metioned in an earlier post that I wanted a Purdy doeling (the Purdy/Iron Horse cross has seemed to be a good one from performance testing in the past). Well now I have two. I hope these two doelings prove to be good framed does, good mothers, and complement Boomer. I guess we may have a better idea this time next year.

The other doeling brought to us at the sale is sired by Iron Horse and out of a daughter of Nick and Tasman Temptress. Dr. Sparks had mentioned her to us, so we decided to give her a try. I like Sports Kat, and he is out of Tasman Temptress (I believe), so maybe we'll see if some of the Sports Kat hip came from her. She's a smaller doeling than the Purdy kids, so maybe she will need an extra year to grow before she is bred, but we'll know more after she is here a while. I would like to have some very maternal does that last a really long time. Of course, only time will tell about that. Chuck didn't get a picture of her, so we will have to wait until she gets home.

I had very much wanted another Goat Hill doeling from 2009, GHK Y145. She is by Iron Horse and out of a full sister to Titan. I liked her mother very much on the Herd Mother page on Goat Hill's web site, so I told Chuck that if we could get her, I thought it would be a good idea. She is a nice bodied doe, and deep, and long, so I have very high hopes for her future kids with Boomer, but of course, I cannot count my chickens before they hatch. I can still hope, however.

The other doeling we bid on is a sister to a doe that sold for a pretty penny at last year's AKGA sale (okay, I read a lot - I get to the point I recognize goats from sale to sale). She is by Boulder Hills S77 and out of JFK Tranquility. I liked the looks of her sister last year, and really the looks (and butts) of most of the Boulder Hills S77 kids, so hopefully she will turn out nicely and again, be a good complement for Boomer. We are trying him on tall framey does, and stockier, more muscle bound does, and we should know after a crop or two what makes the best kids. It's all a learning experience.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

It has been a while since last we posted, but sometimes life gets in the way of goats, just like sometimes goats get in the way of life. We've been having to deal with the first really hot temperatures of the summer. The goats aren't thrilled - most of them aren't all the way shedded out, and of course the near freezing nights that have been interspered with the heat have not helped. The buck kids are going to be weaned soon, as they are still growing well and muscling up, and we don't need anybody thinking they need to breed any of the doelings. The doelings, so far, are on track to be naturally weaned by their mothers. If any of the does gets doing too poorly, we may amend that decision, but so far, with supplemental feeding, they are keeping a reasonable body condition while the kids are still on them, and the kids are benefitting greatly from still being on momma's milk. I just think it is best to allow mother nature to have some say in the weaning process. Especially in the case of replacement does. Here again, we are still learning and we'll see how we feel about that in a few years. Goatkeeping, like life, is a journey with more than one single path to take to get where we hope to go, and some of the detours may slow us a bit, but we certainly learn from them.

Indy's doe kid is growing stronger each day. Little "China Doll" is having to deal with the fact that she is smaller than "34's" older twins in the pasture with her, and "34's" brown doeling "Ginger" takes every opportunity to give her a good smack whenever she can. It is amazing how much goats really are like teenage girls. China Doll is holding her own, though, and now all the babies (and adults) are having to deal with the ticks. We have ticks on top of our ticks, and aren't sure quite how to handle it. We tried guineas last year, and after we kept them up for weeks, when we finally had them out they disappeared (all of them, within about thirty minutes, without a trace). Hmmm. We may take some of the spare chickens we have here at the house and turn them loose up there and see if they can out any sort of dent in the tick population. A friend asked recently, "don't they make a Frontline for goats?" and I had to mention that these are, ultimately, food animals, so no, no Frontline. I sprayed the kids with a Neem product (I love Neem - so gentle to the skin, but quite effective on so many bugs) and that seems to be helping to some degree. I would love to hear if anyone has any great ideas for controlling ticks in the woods - especially with natural products.

Here is a picture of the three Musketeers in the yearling field. We hope to keep the doelings, but the black and white buck (Purebred) will be for sale. I can't imagine he wouldn't throw color for anyone for whom that is a priority.