Saturday, March 10, 2007

Go Go Goats!

Friday, March 09, 2007

Another frosty morning. I walked up to the barn and noticed that everything that we planted was ghostly pale with frost.

Steve, Ginnie, and Nathan left very early this morning in order to catch a plane from Charlotte. They had the sad task of transporting Norma's ashes back to Illinois for her funeral on Saturday.

Today we divided the day between tending the baby goats and weeding in the garden. The goats were pretty good today. Most ate eagerly. A few are bloated and have upset tummies. They got a bit of special treatment and got warm goat milk as opposed to warm Jersey cow's milk. Lee thinks that the cow milk might be a bit too rich for the kids. Goat milk is thinner and has fewer solids that cow milk. Cow milk is also harder to digest and has larger fat globules. Some of these kids are having trouble taking the cow milk. One little buck is not doing so well. Ruthie, a friend of Lee's asked her if she could get this buck to eat. Ruth had trouble with him and let him nurse from his mother. He's never been able to drink from the lamb bar or a bottle. Lee hasn't been able to get him to nurse at all. He sucks halfheartedly and milk dribbles down his chin. She's never seen anything like it. He seems sturdy and healthy, but he won't eat. If he doesn't eat, he'll die. Don't know what else to do.

I got to name a few goats. My favorite is a little alpine that I've named YoYo. Then there's Maeve, a dark-faced alpine. Coco is a dark brown Nubian with big floppy ears. The have distinct personalities. Some are pushy, others are more reserved. All of them are very curious and love to explore. Now that their enclosure has been expanded, they love playing goat games. Running from one end to the other and back again seems to be a mid-day favorite. Some just like to jump and spin in mid-air. King of the Mountain is another favorite. Two goats have figured out how to climb through the stock panels that line their enclosure. Violet, a white saanen, and a nameless little alpine love to explore outside their fence. If they see you, they'll run over to you and jump up on you. They'll follow you around like puppies. These guys are very happy and friendly. I kept putting them back in their pen and they'd turn around and walk right out. They just wanted to be near people. If their friends began to play games, they'd walk back inside and join in the fun. It's good to be a goat, I guess.

Every couple of days, people show up hoping to buy a baby goat or two. Lee is happy to sell her excess goats. Nubians seem to be the most popular. They are the cutest, but they are also the most noisy. They like to make a fuss, whining and bleating. Kinda like Siamese cats. They produce very rich goat milk. Good for cheesemaking. The people who come by are looking to expand their own milk herd, they're looking for a pet, or they want one for supper. Lee is quick to sell the bucks. Does will be sold if their mothers are weak milkers or if there is an excess of certain genetics. Tonight a Hispanic family stopped by and wanted to buy a Nubian buck for a pet. Their son had visited GLD during a class field trip and fell in love with the baby goats. There was a week-old buck ready to go home with them if they were willing to bottle feed it. No problem. They have a nanny goat to provide milk. I hope the boy loves his new friend.

I am sore again. Weeding took a lot out of me. I also have a rash on my forearms. There must be something I'm allergic to in the garden. I hate having such sensitive skin.

1 comment:

Adrianne said...

Great posts, mouth watered at the barbecue blog and I could almost taste the huspuppies...minced cole slaw? How unusual.
Hope you are enjoying better and warmer weather.
Love, Mom