Today's Quote

“If people let government decide what foods they eat and what medicines they take, their bodies will soon be in as sorry a state as are the souls of those who live under tyranny.” Thomas Jefferson

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Update from the Farm

I haven't updated in awhile. I really didn't realize how long it had been. Sorry about that. I will try to do better. Things have been busy around here and some hard decisions being made. With rising grain costs and this terrible drought that most of our country has been under I have been taking a hard look at my goat herd and everything else around here. We currently have 7 does in our herd. We are going to be culling several of those girls simply because they aren't producing or aren't producing well. One of our first nubians has never produced for us. We have tried everything we could try and never gotten a kid from her. I really wanted a doeling from her too. She is a beautiful girl and unfortunately will be the first to go. We have two more that will be culled also. One is old and somewhere along the line I believe developed mastitis which wasn't treated which damaged her udder. When she kidded last year (no kids this year)her udder was hard as a rock and absolutely no milk. We worked on the udder for weeks and finally gave up. Her daughter has the same issues. She freshened last year with a congested udder, was treated and eventually was milking quite well with just over 1/2 a gallon a day once a day milking. However, this year she freshened with the congested udder and after a week or so of working on it we got the vet involved and it is mastitis. We have treated it, but the scarring of the udder tissue has already damaged her production dramatically. There are some forms of mastitis that can be passed from mother to daughter just like CAE can. It isn't CAE (confirmed). So fortunately, I had already started the babies on bottles with milk from another doe. We treated for the mastitis but the damage to her udder has been done. This year we are barely getting a quart of milk a day with twice a day milking. Not even enough to feed her twins (pasteurized of course). She does me no good in my program if I have to steal milk from other does to feed her babies. So she has to go. These decisions are so hard because my girls are girls. They are a good herd as far as goats go. It would be much better for us to cull these three and replace with one. We simply can't afford to feed livestock that isn't doing anything anymore than we already do with the horses. We didn't have a good kidding year, 3 bucklings and 2 doelings with only 3 of the girls freshening. We are taking a hard look at our buck and the other two girls. Somebody else might be added to the go list. We aren't the only ones taking a hard look at our herds. Grain prices are drastically up and going to get worse, there are massive sell-offs happening and going to be happening in the next few months as livestock producers have to make hard decisions so that they can feed what they can during the winter. This massive drought is taking its toll and for those that buy all their food at the grocery..they will be hit hard with rising food costs. Tough times ahead. More later. Blessings from the farm, Kat


Lisa Lynn said...

Hi Kat,
I understand how difficult it is to make those decisions. There will be a lot of good animals going to the auctions and to slaughter this fall. I will be culling quite a few of my chickens as the weather cools and we need meat for the table. They aren't laying as well now, so it has to be done.

Will you eat the goats?

Kat said...

Yes, we will be eating the goats. I simply can't bear the thought that someone would buy them thinking they are going to get good milkers and then they wind up going from bad home to bad home and then the sale barn. I don't want that stress for them. This way, no stress no change in routine...just a quick end. And then too there is meat for the winter. Blessings, Kat