Friday, April 8, 2011

Milk Test Preliminary Results

Just added up the amounts milked from today's test.  We won't have the fat and protein counts until the end of the day.

Most milk-Topaz with 14.1 lbs of milk.  First timer Zippy (9 days fresh) 7.5 pounds (despite being stressed at having her babies taken off her).

We are milking 16 right now. Our herd average is 10.70 lbs. which includes first timers and the one milking through.  Most of our older girls are at 10-13 lbs. A gallon of milk weighs about 8.4 lbs. We won't win the top awards in the LaMancha world, but I think we do dang good for a small commercial herd.  I am proud of them, of their vigor, of their daily willingness to work, and for their companionship.

OK, off to do OB checks on Eliza and Joe Zell.

Test Day Diversions

Our goats are on DHIA milk test through the American Dairy Goat Association and the USDA.  We milk monthly, measure the amount, and then the fat and protein content of the milk is measured.  This all gets recorded and goes into the great computer in the sky. What it does for us personally is tell us objectively who our most productive does are.  I use this information in my cheesemaking, my breeding, and my culling decisions.  I love test day, not because it is more work, but because I actually use the numbers.

Last night test was made particularly exciting as Allie decided to deliver during test.  I had one eye on the  delivering goat and the other on the milking goat.  Thank goodness Debbie was here too!  Allie delivered 2 bucks (first freshener).  One was large/normal and the other just a little squeak of a thing.  He must weigh about 1.5-2 lbs.  Had him in the house all night but he is out with Mom and brother this morning.  I am bottle feeding him colostrum every few hours (a whopping 2 oz. per feeding!).  He is not preemie, just small.  He sucks, walks around, and has good temperature control.  They do so much better outside and at least in with Mom and brother.  I will be out in the barn most of today anyway-more new ones coming soon to a stall near me.

One More Coming

Then, after all this excitement, Debbie and I were eager for some supper.  We decided to put WaMaPa in a birthing pen while we went in.  Deb got her and said-Oops, we have feet.  So, WaMaPa subsequently also delivered 2 vigorous bucks.  We got supper about 10:30 pm, then back out to the barn for the other bottle babies who got missed at 7pm.  All is well, all are fed, and are OK.

Today Eliza looks imminent. For her sake, I sure hope so!

Very Pregnant Eliza

Monday, April 4, 2011

Farmers Market Relief Help Wanted

We find ourselves busier by the year!  This is a good thing. We are in need of a person to work markets on a relief basis.  This will involve Saturdays (mostly) and maybe an occasional Sunday and/or Thursday evening.  Must have reliable transportation. Prior market experience a plus. MUST love great cheese.  Must have excellent customer service attitude and skills.

Position is seasonal and runs from May-September/October.

If interested, contact Rhonda at 360-202-2436 or rhonda@gothbergfarms.com