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Sunday, April 11, 2010

New lamb and kid

Today we had two babies born one was a Shetland lamb, and one was a kid goat. Both where first time mothers all went well and there was no human intervention. I was planting seeds into soil blocks in the sugar house when I heard the goat cry out a couple times I finished planting the onion seeds and then went to the barn. I was surprised to see that the kid was all ready out and taking its first breaths! This all happened within a half hour since the goat was last checked on. Then I looked to see if the ewe had a lamb, It did! there the lamb was lying in a sunbeam the mother, grandmother, and the great grandmother ewes were all licking it of! This I how I think the birthing should be even in a domestic animal. It is encouraging to see that I am getting closer to my goal for a herd of low maintenance animals that do good on grass only and live a long live without a lot of inputs. Such as commercial grain mixes, and trace minerals. And no pharmaceuticals such as selenium, vitamin B, and calcium shots. All this I believe can be done away with by feeding good quality hay, and selective breeding that focusses on not money and weight gain by a certain live stock sale but on good health and weight gain by eating only forage(grass and weeds). Our last batch of lames grew very well on just pasture and were almost to fat at butchering time. They were not the "right size" for bringing much money at the sale though. When you bring lambs to the sale they should be 100 pounds or more to make money or at lest brake even. Our lambs were 60 pounds or so and dressed out at 20-24 pounds this would not bring us much at $0.90 a pound live weight at the lamb sale. But by selling direct to the consumer at $5.00 a pound we can make more than one would make at the sale.

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