Kid-watch - Page 2 - The Horse Forum
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post #11 of 36 Old 04-14-2016, 02:10 AM Thread Starter
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Interesting about the imprinting, and they're right, the hand-reared kids are much easier to handle as adults. We don't imprint, it would be impossible with the sheer volume of kids in the main kidding season.

It all starts nice ands relaxed: yippee! The first kid! Make sure he's comfortable, treated like royalty. After 20 kids you get a bit more blasť, and on the peak kidding days (40-50 popping out daily) you start feeling that your entire existence is reduced to the goat stables. What, there's still a world out there?? And other folks are going out for a beer right now???

In two weeks it's all over and done with, and you're left with the "orphan" kids (who ended up without a mother in the chaos) to hand-raise.

The butts - they stand out a mile if they have problems, not hard to spot. Do cattle not have this problem? Seems like domestic goats are badly- proportioned, (or at least this breed), not enough belly for what they need to fit inside.

Yep, the horses get their holidays when the goats are kidding. I must admit they've been having too many holidays recently. They're not complaining anyway
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post #12 of 36 Old 04-14-2016, 02:15 AM Thread Starter
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Egrogan, we'll be keeping all the crossbred flowery females, though none of the males. Breeding males should always be purebred. And the bulk of the murciana kids are heading off for greener pastures too.
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post #13 of 36 Old 04-14-2016, 03:08 AM
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Would you have less orphans if you put them into smaller groups at birthing time?
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post #14 of 36 Old 04-14-2016, 07:02 AM Thread Starter
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Yes, that would certainly help. Unfortunately our stabling isn't really designed for breaking into small pens, as the enclosed groups wouldn't have access to the outside patio, which is their preferred spot for sunbathing.

Our solution is to tie the kids in pairs at intervals along the walls for the first few days of life. They have 1m of twine and a homemade wooden thing (a short slat with three holes) that is designed to keep them untangled. The idea is to prevent them from wandering off and getting lost. After two or three days they have established a pair bond with their mother and can be set free with a reasonable guarantee of success.

Sadly the kid market is so low at present that it's barely profitable to raise the males with their mothers. Virtually all dairy goat farmers here raise the kids on milk substitute with a robot suckler. We are still doing things the old way and raising them on real milk but we will have to modernize very soon. Better not get started on the economics of kids though....
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post #15 of 36 Old 04-14-2016, 07:23 AM
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love this thread. I have goats myself but only 8-15 depending on the time of the year. I hand milk them and make cheeses, soaps and lotions that I sell locally.
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post #16 of 36 Old 04-14-2016, 08:59 AM Thread Starter
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Photos of your girls, MyBoySi?...

What sort of cheese do you make? I make queso fresco (literally fresh cheese) from time to time, and the family wolfs it down. I made goats' milk soap one year too; great stuff, and lasts longer than the cheese.

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post #17 of 36 Old 04-14-2016, 10:16 AM
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In my old age, I feel I have earned the right to bath with nothing but goat milk soap. It does wonders for the environmental allergy itchies that I didn't used to have

My favorite on-line source is "Two Old Goats". I love their arthritis hand cream.

Right now I have goat milk soap from Duluth. The soap bars are bigger than those from "Two Old Goats" but I don't like it as much. I still have several bars to use up because, I buy a lot at one time so I don't have to keep re-ordering. I'm sorry I did, this time. <shakes head>

Bondre, we stopped dairy farming and leased the farm out by the time I was 12, so I don't remember much about the birthing part of the operation. We only had a couple dozen dairy cattle back then, so I'm sure dad was able to keep a close eye on them. We were very poor and losing a cow or calf during birthing would have hit the finances pretty hard.
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I CAN'T ride 'em n slide 'em. I HAVE to lead 'em n feed 'em Thnx cowchick77.
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post #18 of 36 Old 04-14-2016, 04:47 PM Thread Starter
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Well, looks like I started this thread just in time.

This evening we fed the goats and all normal, then I went down to the horses and took them out to hand graze for an hour. On my return, I heard a high-pitched bleating from the goat yard.

Turns out one of the young females had just kidded. The kid was still wet and lying down. It doesn't really count in the kidwatch because the group of young goats have no official due date (they had a resident Florida billy with them for several months). But WTH, it's the first kid, it's spotty and it's CUTE.



And what do you know, half an hour after producing the first kid, she went and popped out another. Amazing! We are talking a small, one-year goat, with two sizeable kids. Honestly don't know where she hid them. No wonder she's been looking a bit delicate and fed up for the past week.
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post #19 of 36 Old 04-14-2016, 05:32 PM
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My goodness, What a cutie and there's another one?!

That poor mama goat - only a year old and already mother of twins

A Good Horseman Doesn't Have To Tell Anyone; The Horse Already Knows.

I CAN'T ride 'em n slide 'em. I HAVE to lead 'em n feed 'em Thnx cowchick77.
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post #20 of 36 Old 04-15-2016, 06:19 AM Thread Starter
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Talk about a young mother lol. She's very protective, not at all first-timeish.




There's the back end of #2, doing his best carpet impression.
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