Last night was a crazy night! Bekah went to lock up for the night and came running back to the house to announce that two of the babies were missing!! Apparently, Rita hid two of her three kids out in the pasture and we had to search for them by flashlight. I eventually found them snuggled together at the base of a tree. We got them up to the barn, but couldn't catch Rita and they are too young to go a whole night by themselves yet. I finally managed to catch her shortly before 2am this morning. I don't know why just those two were hidden and her itty-bitty first born was with her, nor why she even took them down to the lower pasture. Most of the other does stick close to the barn for the first week or two after they kid, but then Rita has always been a very independent minded girl just like her dam. Needless to say she is getting locked up tonight before sundown!
First the good news: Rita kidded on day 143 with TRIPLETS out of Mojo. Two does and a buck. None of them seem to have gotten their daddy's blue eyes but I am thrilled to finally have gotten some doe kids this year. In the picture they are left to right, 1st born doe kid, 2nd born buck kid, 3rd born doe kid. Right now the doe kid we are most likely to keep is the gold and white one simply because we don't have that color combo in our herd.
*** CORRECTION *** Just had the kids out in the daylight for the first time since they were born and discovered that BOTH doe kids got Mojo's BLUE EYES after all!
And in sad news, Mame's number one son, "Storm Chaser Blues" who we had planned to keep as a herd sire here on the ranch, died during the night of unknown causes. Of course the children were quite upset by the news of his untimely passing.
View from Pikes Peak
This past week (April 6-13) we had the opportunity to visit family in Colorado and Arizona and to do some sight seeing including trips to Pikes Peak and the Grand Canyon. And while it was great to see family and new sights there truly is no place like home. Especially when home means rich, creamy goats milk and fresh eggs from pastured hens! Oh and less they feel left out, we were all happy to see the dogs and cats again, and they were happy to go back to their usual sleeping arrangements too. Especially Izzy who really missed snuggling with his boy. :)
Back on the ranch we separated out Mame's and Tsunami's boys for the first time last night and milked their dam's this morning. Mame' gave about 3lbs and that was without me bumping her udder or in anyway trying to milk her out. (Her boys needed breakfast.) Tsunami was not at all happy about being milked and she has a wicked KICK! Lots of spilled milk, but at least no tears on my part - since I was more or less anticipating a few mornings of goat rodeo before she settles into the new routine.
Finally, today is day 142 for Rita and of course we are keeping a close eye on her and hoping that Mojo will continue his doe streak with her. So far he this year he has produced 5 doe kids and 2 bucks.
Back in February I started teaching Bekah how to milk. I usually sit behind the goats to milk, but Bekah is just too small for that, so we had to do some experimenting. Eventually we found a position that works for her and Mystery has been mostly tolerant of her learning. This morning she milked Mystery out all by herself for the first time. As you can tell from her beaming smile she is quite proud of her accomplishment!
The buck kids were enjoying the spring sunshine and snuck through the fence to play on the dog houses that Mystery and her wether companion share. Great entertainment watching them dare each other on to greater and greater acrobatics.
Mojo's doe kids
On March 29th, Prudence gave birth to triplets out of Mojo. Two does, one with blue eyes and a blue eyed buck kid.
So far Mojo is 3/4 on doe kids and 3/4 on passing along his blue eyes. And as an added bonus all of his kids have been colorful too! A very auspicious start to his career as a herd sire.
Jane is a wife, mother, critter-wrangler and works full-time off the farm as well.