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Goats, gripes, and grasping for greatness
State of the goats in summer 
6th-Jul-2014 01:16 pm
The farm looks pretty good so far this summer. Achaosofkittens dug out the rest of the barn piles yesterday so that I could corral all 18 backyard goats for de-wormer and de-louser this morning. I also wrestled Diego and Viola for toe-trimming as well. Jessie and Scout are limping, so they got toe-goo too. I would love to convince Hercules to stop pooping in the goat barn, dammit, but really that is a small frustration in summertime when no one uses the barn except for shelter during thunderstorms.

The boys up front have a fabulous half-pasture this year. I let them mow the dog side when she isn't around (inside for a nap, off at day care) too, so they are in fine figure. Cookie got his shots on Wednesday, which means he is walking well now again.

It's about time for me to pull out the weed whacker and start attacking the mint. The back pasture has unfortunately healthy mint all down the slope, and the front pasture is just starting to have the same problem. Of course, the dog side is looking great, but it never did have the same issues. I think the mint does better in the sun with short grass (go figure).

Ari is looking good this summer, and if he keeps this form, he is definitely going back to the shows in the fall. His kids are doing well, too. Viola isn't as big as I'd like, and she is a bit of a whiner, but she is awfully pretty. Diego-baby is getting big and fluffy. I didn't have him shorn in June, so with his full coat he looks as big as Lily (smallest of my yearlings). The redhead yearling cabal (Fiona, Taffy, Lily) are all quite striking. The outbreeding difference for using Kid Hollow's O.R. as a sire really shows with the first two, and Lily is assuredly a Gipsy Ridge girl. In comparison to the delicate and sweet redheads, big grey hornless Kezzi is a monster. She may be just a yearling, but she is rapidly catching up to her mom Anna in size. Her hair has far better curl than her mom, too.

I'm starting to consider a "scratch and dent" sale pen at the show this fall. I would probably put in Pan, Alys (keep Fiona as the replacement), and Zoe. While cute and sweet, Zoe is definitely not a keeper for me; she is too small to breed as an Angora. I need to start advertising with the pygora folks for her. I think that I'm also going to offer up Madeline and Kezzi for sale, too. While I'd like to keep Madeline's bloodline going, I still have her aunt Dahlia. And after seeing what Dahlia and Ari can do (Diego), I think I know where I'm going next in that lineage. So Madeline isn't really needed anymore.
6th-Jul-2014 07:26 pm (UTC)
I find it really interesting to read about your goat breeding thoughts!
6th-Jul-2014 07:45 pm (UTC)
I'm glad!

When you look back down the lines, the Jessie/Jared combination of Anna, Lerris, and Zoe all did well (Zoe did exceptionally well). The main issue with both Anna and Lerris was hair style - they didn't have the ringlets. So I bred Anna for ringlets with a Kid Hollow buck (Cookie) and finally got Ari. On another line, Dahlia also did well, with particular emphasis on excellent form and ringlets, and is holding her gorgeous condition even as she is aging. So crossing that stream with Ari to get Diego seemed like a natural choice. We will see what the judges say about my choices this fall.

I'm still kinda thrilled that Jessie's line now makes up 1/3 of the herd, and that the improvements are obvious in each generation. Jessie. Anna, Zoe, and Lerris. Ari and Kezzi. Diego and Viola.

As far as improving my lines, I am very pleased that going back to Kid Hollow Farm twice for bucks and once for a doe appears to be a good set of choices. Cookie, O.R (borrowed), and Ginger (Taffy and Viola's mom) are all excellent animals and have made obvious/specific contributions to my herd. Along with getting Diego judged, I'm looking forward to what the judges say in the fall about Taffy and Fiona as O.R. yearlings.
6th-Jul-2014 09:54 pm (UTC)
I too really love reading your breeding thoughts. Thank you for continuing to post them.
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7th-Jul-2014 02:00 pm (UTC)
Good to know! Please let me know if you have any questions, too.
(Deleted comment)
7th-Jul-2014 02:01 pm (UTC)
I'm glad. I admit that I'm a different kind of a person than the regular IT worker... It's fun to give a different perspective.
7th-Jul-2014 12:51 pm (UTC)
I'm going to chime in and say I, too, really enjoy reading these posts.
7th-Jul-2014 02:01 pm (UTC)
Yay! Let me know if you have something specific you need to know...
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