Monday, October 8, 2012

Finally done it

This is always the hardest part: locking up the goat babies over night and milking mum first thing in the morning, but I've finally done it, and the babies look alright, not happy, but alright and the bottle of milk looks good too!

I have sent a warning email to all the neighbours that I will be shifting the girls twice a day now. In a fortnight I'll be able to milk Poppy as well and then I should be back into cheese making mode!
Already know what my first one will be, a Romano. My first Romano was made with cow's milk and tastes great, but could do with a bit more zing. Hoping this zing will come from the goat's milk!

The duck is on a roll, another egg this morning, and all inside the house. Our 'relationship' has chilled out so much in the last days, since I don't have to chase her back into the paddock and chase to lock them up at night!! Big improvement all round.

Just short one for today,

Sunday, October 7, 2012

My little herd

This morning I'm a bit anxious: moved my little herd back into the big paddock.
The overnight paddock is just getting too pooped in by the 7 little and big monsters. So I decided this morning it's time to take the plunge and try it. The two girls and Moritz were happily following me (rattling a feed container) and Poppy's boys were running to keep up with mum. But Tui's two are just a bit thick I'm afraid and didn't want to get onto the road with mum. So I had to leave them behind, supervised by Kara and carry them to the paddock! Individually. Even though they are only just over a week old, they are too heavy to carry both at the same time!
Nothing happened on the way there, one worry down. Now I just hope the mums will look after their babies properly and take them to the shelter if the weather packs in. The paddock has greened up so much in the 3 weeks since I've taken the girls out to give birth. The girls are all head down at the moment!! Nothing like a new clean feed.
As the first set of boys is about to turn four weeks old I have to organize them getting ringed! Yay, all the fun on the farm.

 Yesterday I had a very good conversation with one of our neighbours about tanning a rabbit hide, so once I have a bit of spare time I will send one of the older ones over the Rainbow bridge and give it a try. Our friend has offered to give me hands-on help if it doesn't work, which is good to have as a back-up.
Not sure yet when, as I still have to get started on reducing our chicken flock. Just isolated a couple of girls again, and whoever doesn't lay from now is for the freezer.
I had contemplated the same fate for my ducks, as it was turning into a major hassle getting the eggs. But I had a flash of genius and found a way of plugging the escape holes in the fence and the duck now stays in the run, all day and night, and like a well-behaved girl lays her eggs in the hutch!!! In the middle, like a proper nest. The question is now, once she's laid a clutch, will she go broody and sit on them?? Anyway, I won't worry about that til she's finished laying, and if she doesn't I hopefully have a broody hen to take over that duty.
Yesterday I finally managed to build a night house for the goat kids, so that they can get locked up over night and I can finally start milking one of the girls, Tui. I still have to wait with milking Poppy as her 5 weeks withholding time after her antibiotic treatment is not up yet.