Saturday, January 12, 2013

Count Down To Kidding Season Has Begun!


Kate, Emily and Hope in the back.. Starting to really show.. 

Ms. Mercy from the back...
Quite an impressive udder for a 1st freshener
And she still have 3 weeks at least till first possible due date..

The Surprise....
I thought she hadnt settled.. then she started hollering a lot..
Her udder has started and she is right on target for February Due Dates..
Front end of Bonnie...
 I can just hear her thoughts....
OMGOSH..I am Pregnant!! What? Why? HOW???

Ethel and her daughter Polly...

Emily and Sunshine in the background..
Emily has that been there, done that look on her face...
Sunshine too.. They are both older.. Emily is 11 and Sunshine will be 8.. 

Sunshine, Mercy and Freckles...
Freckles is the only one bred to Zeke I think.. Maybe Ethel..
but thats okay because he is here for a while and we are saving doelings this year..
To start our meat herd.... 
 

Mr.Zeke.... None to happy about being separated from the goat girls..
He doesn't care that the wethers are there..
They all 3 want to be back in the main herd.. But no go buddy...
Not till Next August.. 

So speaking of the Meat herd start..
We moved the chicken house and Pen Friday..
To make a goat holding pen..
And Kyle replaced my flimsy excuse for a gate with this... 
He is so very talented!!

The reorganized Barn/milk yard and chicken pen..
Chicken Pen use to be directly behind goat barn..
Where the stands are we will have gates front and back and as we milk lock them behind the barn till time to go out to graze. Another gate will be back between the big tree by the chicken house and the corner of the fence going out to the pasture.. Where they will go into Portable fencing to start cleaning up brush and small trees...
 So our plan for the meat herd.. We will be renting approximately 40 acres from our landlord now.. He will get a percentage every fall when we sell our wethers for meat. We plan on raising doelings for herd replacement does.. Working towards good mothering abilities, milk production and good gaining kids.. PLUS Hardiness.. That is where the Spanish buck comes in to play.. He was the top gaining kid out of the kid crop that year.. We are going to be charting the goat kid's gains this year to see how well they do.. I havent ever done that before. I am also going back to Dam raised since I think they learn to eat everything so much faster..
 We are going to be purchasing 3 lengths of Electric netting to be able to move it easily.. It is 164 foot per piece.. One piece will be to keep them from running down the drive to the road if needed. The other 2 will be their pen out on the pasture. We will walk them out every morning after milking and leave them there till an hour or so before sunset. then we will walk them back to the barn and lock them up for the night.. Sounds easy right? Lol We will save any doelings we have this year except for 2 that I have promised to friends and I am getting 2 more in trade for a disbudding job for a friend..
 Candice and Kyla have their own does out in the herd already. Kara is going to be helping with the disbudding job for one of the new doelings. They are going to be working on this meat goat project. They had a chance to get a youth loan through the USDA  which would lead to a bigger loan eventually.. But after much discussion,thinking, and prayer we decided against going into debt to start the meat herd. Instead we have the means to start one right here. It may take a little longer but it will be debt free.. We have drilled into our girls pay with cash or do with out because we don't want them to get caught up in the same trap we did with credit cards and loans that got us in a bind for so many years.. Still have some that we are working on but for the most part we are debt free..
 So anyway.. we are working towards a browse/graze based goat herd. The property around us is packed full of great goat browse. They have tried brush hogging but it doesn't get it all and is expensive. So they are thrilled to be getting some land cleared in the process.. We are hoping to get up to 25-30 does.. Selling all the wethers born in Jan/Feb in the fall for meat.. So that is our plan so far.. We are all excited...

   Render therefore to all their dues: tribute to whom tribute is due; custom to whom custom; fear to whom fear; honour to whom honour.
 Owe no man any thing, but to love one another: for he that loveth another hath fulfilled the law. Romans 13:7-8

4 comments:

OurCrazyFarm said...

Your goat girls look wonderful, Tonia! We will soon be getting ready for our first babies, too~ can't wait!

Queenacres said...

What a great opportunity for your girls! You are so blessed by having the chance to lease the extra pasture...I pray that your herd does well!

small farm girl said...

We are going bigger with our meat herd also! I love the excitement!!!!!! Good luck!

vivian king said...

Hi Tonia, at one time we had a nice goat herd too, I enjoyed them so much; but, though I do not have goats anymore, I enjoy reading your pages and all you and your family are doing with yours. The Lord continue to bless your efforts.
In Joy,
vivian