Proverbs 27:27 And thou shalt have goats' milk enough for thy food, for the food of thy household, and for the maintenance for thy maidens.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Kid Crop 2015

Ready or not here they come!  I took the winter off from milking because I knew I would be very busy with our foster children.  They are all very young and were needing intense mommy time.  We have however missed having the fresh milk daily.

Last fall I looked over my goat herd and chose which ones I needed to breed for 2015 milk.  I choose Calfy as I had never freshened her yet and I needed to see what kind of milker she was going to be.  I choose Jubilee as I had never freshened her as well.  Yes, I will be milking two first fresheners this year.  Might as well get it over with... the struggle thru the first few weeks as the teats stretch out and training them to the milk stand is sometimes difficult.  I really needed to breed them to see if I want to keep them or cull them.  Also, last year I gave Plenty a break and did not breed her.  So I bred her for 2015.  I gave the other three does in our herd the year off as they gave us milk all through 2014.  All three goats I bred, came into heat with in  24 hours of each other.  I put each goat in with the buck of my choice for a day, to make sure the bucks had the opportunity to catch them in standing heat.  All three settled on the first breeding this year.   So that means they would all deliver with in a day or two of each other.

The first one to deliver was Plenty.  She had them quietly in the wee morning hours on the 25th.  She had them all cleaned off and one had nursed by the time we got to them.  I usually like to take the babies immediately, milk the moms out and bottle feed from the start but this was fine.  She had a little brown buckling and a black and white doeling. 
I had bred Plenty to Major Coco this year.  They are both pure bred Nigerian Dwarf goats.  The buckling is nursing well but I am having to tube feed the doeling as she will not take the bottle at all yet.  She was born with no suck reflex and stays back away from the other goats.  If the doe makes it I might keep her and freshen her to see what kind of udder she will have.  Her mom is a great milker.

Later on in the day Jubilee delivered.  She did a great job for her first time and also delivered a buckling and doeling.  They are both brown.  Jubilee has blue eyes and the little doeling has blue eyes for sure!
I could not get a clear picture of the doeling as she was so bouncy and moving so much.  She is very adorable and dainty. 
Very cute buckling! I can't tell if he has blue eyes or not.  They are very light grey/tan.
Jubilee did a great job standing on the milk stand and letting me milk her.  Her teats are a little short but will lenghten over time a bit.  I bred Jubilee to Sargent Pepper Box.  They are both full blooded Nigerian Dwarf goats.  This is Sargent's first babies born on our farm.  I would love to keep the doeling and freshen her to see what kind of udder she will have.  But will wait and decide over the next week.

Calfy is a mixed goat.  She is half La Mancha and half Nigerian Dwarf.  She was the last one that needed to deliver.  I thought she would deliver in the night last night as she was so uncomfortable but when we got up this morning she had not.  She was pawing the ground all morning so I knew she was close.  At around 11:30 she delivered two large bucklings.  She did an awesome job!  It was her first freshening and it went very well for her.  I milked her out and she freshened with the same wonderful udder as her mother and grandmother.  She stood very well and was easy to milk.  A keeper for sure.  I bred her to Joseph (pure Nigerian Dwarf buck) who is known around here for throwing very flashy kids.  Calfy is pretty flashy herself so the bucklings are just beautiful.  I will probably always breed Joseph to her as there genetics meshed so well and made some stunning kids.  Not only in looks but conformation.
The above buck was born first.  He looks like Calfy and has the LaMancha ears.  He is super strong and cute!
The buckling above was born second.  He looks a lot like his dad and got the Nigerian Dwarf ears!  He is just stunning!

There great-grand mother and grandmother were wonderful milkers and their mom looks like she is going to be as well.  They will make someone nice little breeder bucks, for their back-yard herd of mid-sized goats.

Even though we had more bucks than does born, I am very pleased with all the kiddings and deliveries.  I was not planning on keeping anything out of Calfy and am still not sure I am keeping the two doelings born this year.  We might be getting an infant thru foster care and I know I will be very busy again for a while.  I might just see how things go this year with milking and make a decision next time around about who to keep what out of.
The baby pen!
Many blessings upon your life,

Happy Farming!

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