Saturday, November 10, 2012

Goats!

Oreo and ??

We have a herd! Last week we picked up six goats and this week we picked up four more. I still need about four or five more meat does, but we are definitely in the goat business.

The first six were bought for cheap off Craigslist and are pygmy/Nigerian dwarf goats. One polled black buck, a brown nanny, two black agouti does, a white La Mancha wether, and a tan wether.  I found them in Navasota, about a zillion miles down a narrow gravel road. The owner was selling them. He had a good perimeter fence, but was surprised that the goats were eating the wooden posts holding up the porch on his fake log cabin house. Duh. When we drove up, Dan noticed a horse standing on the front porch. We got a little closer and discovered there were two horses on the porch (the sorrel was camouflaged against the faux logs). I had to move the palomino to ring the doorbell, but they weren't home. 

Brown doe, Whitey, Stupid and wether
Went around back and saw that one doe had jumped out of the three foot high pen he built. The palomino tried to help me corral her, but we ended up waiting for the guy to come home and help us shove them all in the trailer. Don't think this guy knew much about livestock. The wife said the horses get on the porch and ring the doorbell, which is kinda funny, but odd.  This was a weeknight and by the time we got to the farm, it was very dark. We pulled in, opened the trailer and had to drag them out. The donkeys were not well-pleased. At all. No-sirree-Bob. We left the trailer at the farm with the door open to give the goats a place to hang out. 

Things settled down a bit after a few days. This week, we picked up a boer buck, two boer-type does, and a huge white wether from a woman in Wellborn. I visited her one day and liked the two-year old buck. She also had the two does. I made an offer to buy the buck on the condition she sell me the does, too. I could tell she was attached to Belle and Doll, but she had decided to go with dairy goats instead of meat goats. The next day, she let me know that she would part with them. We rolled up to her mansion and loaded the girls in the trailer, thinking it would be easier to load the buck if the girls were on board. Dan backed the trailer to the gate in the buck pen and we got his large self loaded. At that point, the seller turns to me and says, "You need to take Billy (he's the wether). He's too rowdy for the dairy does and he'll be lonely." Uh, okay. So we loaded him, too. 

Doll and Belle
This time, we got to the farm and it wasn't quite dark. The donkeys and goats were hanging out together in the picnic area like old friends. We opened the trailer and got the buck out. The two does are like teenage girls at a party who don't know anyone, all skittish and noisy. We stayed a while to make sure the two bucks would not kill one another.

Oreo and Billy Bad
Today, I got out to the farm and saw the donkeys near the fence when I drove up. I rolled down the window and told them to meet me at the picnic area. They never showed, so I went looking for them. Found them guarding the goats! Convinced them to come with me and the entire herd followed me to the round pen. Gave the donks their boosters first and turned them out. I coerced the goats into the pen and shut the gate. For the first time ever, Molly McButter (momma donkey) started making donkey sounds! The donks were distraught, so I let them in the pen with the goats. Then we gave the first six goats their initial 8-way vaccine (the boers were already vaccinated). So thankful for the help from the Dans in catching and holding critters. I realize that I really need a goat stand/headpiece to use to do this work. Most need a hoof trim, so that's on my list of things to get.

Oh, the names? Well, they are acquiring names.

Stupid-- what both Dans said when the little black buck walked up to the boer buck with an attitude.
Stupid and Billy Bad
Quisling- the large white wether-- D3 noticed he's always looking out for himself. 
Billy Bad A$$- the Boer buck. 
Belle and Doll- the yearling Boer does came with these names and answer to them.
Whitey- the other white wether. Likes to lock horns with Quisling
Oreo- original name of one of the pygmy does. She a black agouti with a white middle.
So the three without names are the brown Nigerian/pygmy doe (she is the head doe in this herd), the tan wether, and the other black agouti doe.

I have applied for a Scrapies herd number and plan to tag all of them, especially the kids, who will NOT have names... 

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