We are making preparations for our 5th kidding season! With seven expecting Nigerian Dwarf does, 2013 will be our largest and most diverse group of kid goats, with outstanding genetics including progenitors from Old Mountain Farm, Rosasharn, PromidedLand, Sugar Moon, Dragonfly, and Twin Creeks! We will have a fairly even mixture of first, second and third fresheners. Based on previous seasons and reasonable expectations, I expect to have 16 bundles of joy bouncing around in the barn.
Milking time has been temporarily suspended for our girls as their bellies grow and bodies miraculously adjust to the gift that is pregnancy. They will receive an extra copper bolus, shot of selenium/vit-E, and an annual booster vaccination for CD&T, within the next several months.
March will usher in another three weeks of lost sleep over nighttime pregnancy checks, birthing participation, and hand-scrubbing goo out of all my good linens. It will be a great month of hard labor and much love. May will bring a work reprieve and sadness as we see our babies to new homes. Summer-time is filled with milking and cheesemaking, fall breeding and finally a winter rest. Which is where we are now. It's a wonderful cycle that I am eager to repeat.
Join me and many others in raising these curious, intelligent companions, who support your homestead dairy. Our kids are weaned from unpasteurized Nigerian milk (CAE-free herd) at 8 weeks and eating hay/grain supplemented by kelp and minerals. They are also disbudded (no horns), vaccinated against CD&T (Rabies is optional), and castrated (for wethers). Does and bucklings are tattooed for registration purposes. I demonstrate hoof trimming and vaccinations (subcutaneous injections) to new goat owners and offer full support after kids go home.
|photo courtesy M. Mesler|
For now, though, I will enjoy my break along with the hard cheeses and frozen chevre that I've been fortunate to set aside for our winter meals. Happy Solstice!!