Saturday, April 25, 2015

Kids Everywhere!

Harmony with her two handsome bucks.

Our farm is home to Nubian goats.  We raise them to milk.  Our family has been drinking raw goats milk for the last 17 years. I'm a big believer in the health benefits of raw goat's milk.  We began this adventure because of allergies and ear aches with my young children.  Besides the milk, I make yogurt and goat cheese. And I really enjoy goats especially the kids.  

This season we did a lot of improvement in the goat set up. We decided to move them behind the barn and build better shelters. My husband built these fabulous buck barns for our two breeding buck, Jericho and Olaf.  I was a little concerned about how they would travel from the workshop to the barn area but with chains, an old backhoe, and my husband's ingenuity all went well.  

I was at the controls here but not for long.

On the move!

Approaching the barn.

My goal is to enjoy milk almost year round. Expect for a couple months in winter this has been possible. This season we had one doe, Harmony, kid in late February. With the weather it, requires a few heat lamps in the barn but the babies do fine.  We have a nice warm barn and a kidding pen that is very sheltered. We been enjoying milk to drink through early spring.but with a second goat we will have enough to make yogurt and cheese.  

Harmony and her two handsome bucks.

The dynamic duo!

My second doe, Mollie, had her first babies Sunday, April 19th.  One buck and one doe.  I love it when everything goes well.  In my experience, goats seem to have very few birthing problems.  My Nubians have all turned out to be very attentive good mamas.

Little buck resting.

Playing in the barn while I do chores.

The third doe of the season was looking pretty miserable and finally had her babies, triplets, Friday, April  24th.  One buck and two does.  Mama and babies are doing fine. 

Millie looking very ready.

Cleaning babies up.

Goats are a great investment for a small farm or homestead.  They are very hardy and healthy animals.  They consume less feed than a cow.  I like it because I can manage them easily from trimming hooves to birthing babies. They need one shot a year CDT, monthly worming, and a yearly blood test if you are trying to keep a clean herd.

Jumpin' High Jericho our oldest buck

Thought the pigs needed a mention.  Growing fast.

A well bred goat gives delicious milk with no off flavor.  It is a myth that goat milk tastes goaty.  With proper feeding, milking, and investing in well bred animals the milk tastes like whole milk.  I really like my breeding line.  It has produced some great milkers and adorable kids.

Jericho enjoy his new pen.
Olaf enjoying his new pen.

We raise Nubians.  I love the roman nose profile and the pendulous ears.  Nothing is cuter than a young Nubian kid with ears flopping as it leaps and runs.  Nubians sometime have a bad rap for being noisy.  I have found that depends on the goat.  Most are only vocal or talkative at meal time and are just anxious to eat.  I really like the milk from this breed.  The high butterfat content contributes to its delicious taste.  This breed is very friendly, easy to train to milk, very health and hardy, good mothers, and an all round great breed.

So if you are thinking about adding goats to your homestead, I highly recommend it.

New location of buck pens and pig pens.

Worn out.

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