Between bucks and wethers, I currently own twelve boy goats. Of those twelve, five are ready and willing to breed - i.e. intact and older than 8 months. Of those five, four are related - Ari and his three sons Diego, Ivan, and Simon. And of those four, only one stood stud last year (Ari), and only one is on tap to stand stud this year (Ari) if I manage to sell enough of my current goats to want to make more.
Simon and Ivan are definitely for sale.
Both Simon and Ivan can't be put to any of my redheads because of genetics. Also, Ari x anyone red = red, so neither of them is bringing anything to the girls for color. Simon is a good-looking boy, from his perfectly curled horns to his perfectly curly tail. And I'm fairly confident that I could create him again from Ginger x Ari, since his big sister looks a lot like him even with a different father.
The reasons for selling Richie are less overwhelming, but just as simple. In short, he has nothing I need.
I just said that Ari x any redhead = red, so Richie isn't necessary to create redheads in my flock. His hair isn't so amazing that he is significantly better than Ari. In the past three years, he has consistently placed middle-of-the-pack, and he and Ari have gone 4th-5th or 3rd-4th etc. in the shows where they have been judged together. So it's not just me saying he's not an improvement. The only thing he's got is size. At three years old, he's a good three inches and 20 lbs bigger than Ari. But then I come back to the fact that I don't really care about size. ::shrug:: My goats are the size they are, whatever that size is.
Diego is a looker. He's lovely. He's striking. He is a winner. (He's also a hormonal moron, but that's normal for a two-year-old boy goat.) Both he and his dad Ari have taken honors at the shows*. I want to keep him because he's pretty nifty to look at. But I keep coming back to the fact that I don't need Diego
as a stud on my farm.
So why would I be keeping him when I'm not using him or even planning to use him for at least another two years? He's only two years younger than his father, so he's not a great insurance policy. His dad has sufficient recessive genes to produce more reverse badgers, as proven by little Clancy this year. And, if I breed anyone, I'm planning on another round of Dahlia x Ari this year.
But he's so pretty
At this point, I'm so on the fence about selling Diego that I've printed out two show "For Sale" signs, one with him listed on it and one without. Maybe I'll have a better idea what I'm doing with him once I've seen the competition this year.
* Honors for Ari and Diego include
Ari: NY/2012 2nd; SVFF/2013 1st/Grand, NY/2013 1st; SVFF/2014 2nd, NY/2014 3rd; SVFF/2015 4th, NY/2015 4th.
Diego: SVFF/2014 1st*, NY/2014 2nd (with advice
); SVFF/2015 2nd, NY/2015 1st/Reserve.
*Only goat in the class, but he was awarded a blue ribbon. I'm not sure that counts the same, though.
Of note, even if I sell no-one, I'll at least be down by two boys at the end of October. Padric and Clancy are a pre-arranged swap for two girls. That won't help my frat house problem this year, but will definitely help with next year.