12 Boys, 11 Girls
We finished kidding about 10 days ago but as our last Mum Gloria had quads I wanted to wait until I was confident that all would survive - delighted to confirm that all four are thriving!
Since our last post we have triplets (Luna, Sybill and Colin) from Jade - and very pleased with them she was too. Luna had a problem with her back legs to begin with - bending inwards and outwards, poor little girl. Happily they strengthened up after 3 or 4 days and she is now leaping around..well..like a goat kid.
Jade's sister Jemima gave us two pretty girls - Bellatrix and Nymphadora (aka Bella and Tonks). Jemima is very shy and has been rather protective of her little ones though now out in the main area they are starting to come out of their shells.
Tiggy finally got on with it on the 18th March - this was the first of our own buck Emperor's kids so we were excited to see them. Quite a nail biting labour (for me - Dave is far more relaxed than me) which took far longer than any of our other mums. Happily all well, three beautiful triplets - Fleur, Gabrielle and Neville. Apologies, no decent photos as yet, you'll have to take my word for it - gorgeous!
And finally 2 days later Gloria gave birth to a collective weight of 15kgs (no wonder she'd spent the last month groaning and moaning) in the form of Sirius, Remus, Dobby and Minerva (Minnie). We found out from Gloria's previous owner that she had had quads before and one didn't survive so I've been a bit anxious. We have weighed them every day and so far they are gaining weight pretty much every day. Goat kids are a devil to get on the bottle and, whilst they haven't taken much so far, it's worth the messing about in the early days so that they are more receptive to it as they grow and need more milk than Gloria can provide. The boys are getting better at it but Minnie generally just screams at me and of course I usually end up wearing more milk than I get down the kids!
So the maternity barn is full of kids which makes for an interesting feeding time. All of the kids have been ear tagged and the boys banded and we are half way through our vaccination programme. Also keeping us busy is hoof trimming. In the main barn we have 23 doelings, Emperor and his buddy Asterix to trim up - they are all about a year old so their hooves are not so hard to do. Now the mum's have given birth they also need a trim - their hooves are a lot harder and some are not in a good state so will need a few goes to get them to a decent shape. Dave is a whizz at vaccinations (particularly now he has his fancy auto injector gun!) and I seem to be quite good a picking crap out of hooves and trimming! Also on the To Do list is worm drenching - I suspect we may be wearing some of it until we get the hang of it.
Feeling very thankful that our first kidding season was relatively problem free - I know it wont always be so, such is the way with farming.
Spring is well on its way here... though not so much today! I've started working up in the allotment and planting seeds in the greenhouse. Hedgerows and trees are greening up and we are keeping our eyes peeled for the return of the swallows.. which reminds me to order some more netting for our windows before the bats move into their maternity roost in our lofts. Whilst we don't really mind, I'm not sure all our guests will appreciate bats flying round their heads in the early hours of the morning!
Looking forward to more days like this..