Wednesday, March 19, 2008

More "Newbies".....

We made a "road trip" yesterday. It all started on Sunday, but had to wait until Tuesday because of the rain.

We found out about a man who was getting rid of his Kinder goats because of a death in the family. He had bought them for his wife but , since she died, he wanted to get "out of the goat business".

We waited until the thick fog burnt off on Tuesday to leave (about 9:45 am). It was a drive of about 1 3/4 hours, so it wasn't all THAT bad! We ended up getting home at around 4:15 in the afternoon. We also stopped at a woman's house who makes lotions, soaps and cheese using goat milk. She gave us a few samples. I REALLY like the cheese, but will probably save the soaps and lotions for Deb.

I spent most of the day doing "odd jobs" in the barn so I could be around to see how the new bunch was interacting with the "natives". So fa, so good. Not even much head butting or shoving going on.

The Kinder Billy is a scruffy looking beast. I call him a "Neandergoat" because he looks like a goat version of a caveman. He's real friendly, which is ok - until they are in "rut". It's NOT a good idea then.

I did have a run in, or two with him, though. I used my small post hole digger to dig a hole inside the barn for a stall support. After I dug the hole, I got out my tape measure to see how long of post I'd need. I put the end of the tape in the hole, and stretched it toward the ceiling.....
All of a sudden, I feel a tug on the tape and see him walking off with it! He did NOT want to let go, either!

He was a big help digging the hole, too. I was using one of the hand diggers with the auger and shoe at the end. Every time the handle would come around, it would hit him in the head. Every half turn, I'd feel it hit and hear a "thunk" (and a hollow sound......) when it made contact with his skull. Nobody ever said he was bright.....

The new kids are just a bit older then our Boer kids, but they have already been out to mingle. Most of the time, the Kinder kids stayed to themselves and frolicked in some hay I have spread on the ground for mulch. They do seem to be noisier then the Boer kids, though.

I used an old drum from a clothes dryer for a hay feeder for the new goats. They aren't quite as tall as the Boers, so I cut half of the side of the drum down about 6". They seem to like it a lot better like that. I Think the two does are trained to eat at separate feeders, too. If I have some grain the automatically go to separate stalls to eat. It is nice to have it like that. It sure makes it easier to feed and to control the portions better. We need to put up about 800' of fence soon, so we can have the milkers separated from the billys.

Yesterday was also the first time I have EVERY tasted goats milk that I LIKED. I have tasted milk from several different goats, different breeds, and different farms, but it all tasted "dirty" or something. The lady who makes the soaps let us sample the milk from her goats while we were there. Deb grew up on goat milk, so she knew she would like it. I grew up on cow's milk. I took a drink of this milk, and can honestly say I couldn't tell it from cow's milk. It was a slightly different color (more yellow), but it was good.

Deb did have a "run in" with the new billy! It started out with him pulling her hair and ended with him being embarrassed in front of his ladies. Deb had to show him who was the tougher goat before he would leave her alone. You can read about it on her blog.

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