Restarting

I’ve had to get a job, so any hours we have will be by appointment only once we get started again.  I’ve joined TOFGA, and we are looking at greenhouse ideas.  Strictly low budget.  I’m leaning towards a hoop house like we did with the shelters.

Ann adjusted fairly well to her new home, and Amy is happy as a clam.  She’s still skittish around me, but will come to me if Amy does.  However, she won’t let me touch her so I can’t feel for lamb movement.  I’ll have to get my son out to help me. We’re discussing going back and buying the other ewes she had for sale. The goats are still eating Amy’s wool, so a separate area is moving up the “must do” list.

Our neighbor put the land next to us up for sale.  This is the land we tried to buy, but he bought it first.  I’m hoping we can get a down payment together, and buy it when he drops the price in February.  It’s doubtful, but it won’t hurt to try.

We’re trying to decide how to lay out the chickens and turkeys in relation to the rest of the place.  We miss having our feathered friends and plan to replace them asap.  We’re okay on some eggs for now, but my soy-sensitive daughter is joining us in the spring, so we need them in place by then.

The goats keep escaping and getting into the neighbor’s pasture of cattle.  Not a good way to build relations.  We’ve put temporary fencing up to block the barbed wire that they army crawl under (seriously amusing to watch a 110 pound goat army crawl).  The adults haven’t gotten out again but the kids have.  We’re literally piling things in front of any suspected holes to block them. So far they’re winning.

So far…

To say things haven’t gone as planned is an understatement.  We were told it would cost $500 – 1000 to hook up water and electric.  It is $1000 for electric and $3000 for water.  However, the way our entrance is won’t allow for a long trailer with the electrical pole or a drill for a well. We hit the camper tongue and back end pulling in with a lifted truck. We have to put in a driveway and redo the gate we just did.  I left all my kidding/lambing supplies in Maine, because I didn’t breed anyone this year due to the move.  I just bought a ewe who is probably bred.  That’s not a big deal but we do have a lot of hawks, so I need to build a safe place for the lamb. There is more, but that’s the gist of the way things are going.

We don’t regret moving, though.  It’s not all bad.  There is a peace when I walk outside that I haven’t felt in a while.  The livestock love the space, though the goats have figured out how to get into the neighbor’s property. We need to fix that,  but we had unexpected problems that literally killed our small building fund plus our emergency fund.  I look forward to setting things up, bringing back the turkeys and chickens, and breeding next fall.   It will take at least a year longer than expected.

 

The Difference in Size

We have a slight conundrum.  Simon and River (on table – 4 months old) are one month older than Kaylee and Book (on the ground). Obviously, the younger ones are much smaller than they should be.  They look more like mini Oberhasli than full-size ones.  Kaylee’s back is about even with River’s underside.  Continue reading

In a Holding Pattern

Things are a changin’.

Everything other than goat sales is on hold.  We have an initial move date for myself, our middle son, two dogs, the goats and sheep to move down to the land.  I will be concentrating on getting the disastrous, overloaded house organized, decluttered and packed.

 

A Few Pictures

I posted an album on our Facebook page with some pictures of the kids and sheep.   I tried to post the link to the album, but Facebook kept saying the post no longer exists.  We’re not sure if we’re selling the second batch of kids yet.  They’re the nicest of the 4 we have as far as form and coloring (ignoring the white on Kaylee).

https://www.facebook.com/Seasons-of-Change-Farm-1669860343269089/timeline

 

Kidding Season is Over

Our kidding season has come to a close.  The final tally is 2 live bucks, 2 live does and one stillborn buck.  Unfortunately, both does have a patch of white on their heads.  Breed standards say the white cannot be over 1.5 inches in any direction. Theirs isn’t so they still conform to Oberhasli standards.

We were quite surprised when Jupiter, a first freshener, had twins without a sound.   I had  camera with sound focused on the birthing stall.  My first clue was when I heard the first kid crying.  Both of her kids were much tinier than any other Ober kid we’ve had.  The buck came out second, was in distress, and not breathing.  We worked with him, and he pulled through.  Jupiter turned out to be a great mom, and both kids are doing well.

All 4 kids will go up for sale.  A brother and sister are currently listed, the second set of twins will be listed next week.  The buckling in the second set is looking good for breeding.  His dam’s udder is looking very nice, and he is a deep bay color.  Hopefully, his color doesn’t change as he sheds his baby coat.   I will add a picture of the udder when I list him.

After Loki lost her buckling, she was crying constantly.  So she stole her sister’s kids.  Her sister doesn’t seem to mind, so the little piglets will nurse on one, then run over to the other one and nurse.  This works for me, because I haven’t gotten the milking area set up yet.

Loki’s buckling was taken to a university for a necropsy.  It showed a genetic mutation, but there seems to be no cause for it.   We investigated her line and find nothing to support a genetic abnormality.  She is not the product of intensive line breeding, which can cause this, so we’re not sure what happened.   Our vet says to not breed her again, but her specialty is more equine.  Another vet that is  goat savvy says sometimes it happens for no reason, and she wouldn’t hesitate to breed her again in the Fall.

After discussing it with several long-time breeders, we will try again.  We will bring in a Guernsey buck or AI straws, because we want to breed up to them, which will have completely different lines.  However, if it happens a second time, then she’s done.