Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Goat Kidding: Benjamin & Jacob

 All the unbred does were anxious to view their new herd-mates. Kidding brings excitement and energy to the barn every time.

Sean and I went outside together to care for the afternoon chores. While Sean went upstairs to throw down the hay bales we needed, I entered the barn to start emptying water buckets for Sean to refill while I distributed hay. The does who had already kidded and their young were loose in the yard. Through a space in the wall separating the young bucks from Jane's stall, I saw what looked like Phoebe in with Lilly and Bailey. "Strange. How did she get through that fencing?" I wondered in the same split second that I saw the kid in question had wattles. Phoebe doesn't. New KIDS!!!! I called, "Sean! Come down here. I have something to show you!"
Jacob and Bailey April 7, 2015
 I needn't have yelled. He was across the way in the milking stall and from his vantage point, he could see Bailey's tail end. "We have kids?!" he exclaimed and ran to join me to check out the situation. That being, we estimate that we missed Bailey kidding by about half an hour. Both kids were born, mostly cleaned and almost dried. They were up, walking and nursing already. All without our help.

Sean went inside for our birthing kit and my camera. While we took a good look at the new kids and cared for them a bit, Bailey enjoyed an extra ration of grain, which she gobbled up greedily. We dipped the long umbilical cords in an iodine solution to help dry them and prevent infection and weighed the new kids.

The older twin (based on his level of cleanliness/dryness) got his daddy's Lamancha style ears. He has black markings on his head that make it look very much like he is wearing a hood or mask. Weighing in at nearly 8 pounds, we named him Jacob. If no other Lamancha does are born to pair him with, he'll make a good buddy for Zeke.
Jacob, 8 pounds of attitude and cute. 

The younger buck we named Benjamin. He is tawny colored with his Mother's ears and wattles and weighed in at 8 pounds, too. For those of you that don't know, wattles are those little fingers of hanging skin that sometimes grow from a goat's chin. (Read more about it HERE.) Though they really serve no purpose physically, they increase the "awwww" factor for me. Ben is our first goat kid to be born with them on the homestead. ♥ Seriously, I can't handle the cute!

Ben was less active than his brother. We made sure we was able to latch on to drink milk and once satisfied that he was drinking, let him rest in the sun. Being born is hard work, after all!
Benjamin, born April 7, 2015 

This was Bailey's first kidding ever. We try to be present for kidding, especially when it is the first one for a doe, but Bailey had other ideas. Sean has been checking her regularly, but she never showed any discharge or signs of impending kidding. We'll make a note in her records that Bailey's udder developed fully upon kidding. She won't be bred again until 2017 and without writing things like these down, we're unlikely to recall them accurately. Bailey is showing herself to be a good and attentive Mother. She washed her kids for the most part herself and instead of jumping or walking away when the kids attempt to suckle- as new moms often do- Bailey is content to stand still and chew her cud.

For those of you keeping track, that is five successful kiddings at Lally Broch Farm this season. So far, we have had 4 sets of twins and 1 singleton born bringing nine bouncing kids into our world. For doelings we have been blessed with; Sarah, Phoebe, Anna, and Piper. For bucklings, we have welcomed; Levi, Ezekiel, Boaz, Jacob and Benjamin. Piper and her Mother have moved to their new home already. Once all the kids are born, Sean and I will decide which kids will be for sale this year. If you are interested in adding goats to your homestead or growing your herd, we will be listing our pairs shortly.

Thanks for visiting this morning. It is lovely to share your company. :)
~Sean and Sonja ♥

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