Tuesday, October 28, 2014

First Frost


A surprise doeling
Bolt and Frost
Bolt was looking thinner and thinner. Despite multiple wormings, extra food, and putting her into a pen to gain weight. With both her and Blaze failing to have healthy kids, we were seriously thinking of putting them into freezer camp. Our reasons were practical. Being Boer mixes, they tended to consume a lot of food. They were no good for milking because they carried double teats on each side and didn’t produce as much milk as my dairy goats. So, with Bolt failing to conceive this year and Blaze having a stillborn, we both decided to write off the Boers as a learning experience.

READ MORE HERE...

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Rude Goats

Bucks with horns like this one can be pretty dangerous.
The other day I went to see some bucks for sale.  I have two of Oreo's daughters that I'm keeping, which means I have to find a new buck to breed them to get milk from them.  This will be Oreo's third rut, which means he maybe has two more good years.

I looked around and found a possible buck.  He was even a LaMancha.  So, we went to look at him  with the thought of getting him.

He was huge and in rut.  Yes, Oreo is in rut, too, but not like this.  This buck had his horns and swung them around at me when he was annoyed.  He came across as what I would consider a dangerous goat -- if there can be such a thing.  It wasn't the bucky behavior -- it was the lack of respect for humans.

What made his behavior worse was that there were at least five other intact bucks running around loose along with several does in season.  Of course, the people didn't think that the younger bucks could breed their does (Oh, yes they can!) and the younger bucks were sure trying to.  I guess they didn't believe in wethering bucks that they wouldn't use for breeding.

My husband now looks at Oreo in a different light.  By comparison, Oreo is a gentleman.  Sure, he's bucky, but then, that's what he is.  And I'm not concerned that he's going to hurt me.

I was interested in one of her younger bucks, but they haven't called me back, so it may be just as well.



Honey Wine or My Foray into Mead


Honey BeesWay back when, I made mead. I think it was back with Leif Erickson or some guy by that name. Of course, back then we had rotary phones, the Internet existed as ARPANET (look it up), and I was on the cutting edge when it came to computer development. I also stumbled across a USENET post for how to make mead.

Read More HERE...

Friday, August 22, 2014

Cat Calls

Cat Calls


photo by Sgarton from www.morguefile.comLast night we heard chirping. Loud chirping we’ve never heard before in all our time living in the mountains. Loud enough to hear over the TV and over the fans as they worked toward cooling down the house. My husband muted the TV and turned off the fan. Sure enough, something was chirping out there. But what?

Read more: http://www.motherearthnews.com/homesteading-and-livestock/cat-calls-zbcz1408.aspx#ixzz3ArzqN5WA

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Fire Moons and Evacuation Preparation

Fire Moons and Evacuation Preparation


The sunset with smokeTonight we had a fire moon.
I call it that because in the summer when the forest fires start up, the moon glows orange in the sky. I wish it were unusual in Montana, but it’s just not. Fires and smoke every year is the norm until a “season ending event.” Which is usually the first snowfall.

Read more: http://www.motherearthnews.com/homesteading-and-livestock/fire-moons-and-preparation-zbcz1408.aspx#ixzz3As0hwcV4

Friday, August 8, 2014

Wethering Heights: Neutering Male Goats


Rollo when he was bornMy current goat kid tally was a bit dismal: five bucklings and one doeling. While I don’t have anything against male kids per se, everyone wants females and bucklings are considered undesirable since they don’t produce milk.

Read more: http://www.motherearthnews.com/homesteading-and-livestock/wethering-heights-zbcz1407.aspx#ixzz39ahY5OKo

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Sales and Seed Banks

Some discounted startsI’ll tell you a secret if you promise not to tell. My sister thinks I’m a great gardener when in fact, I’m pretty lousy at it. It doesn’t mean that I don’t get things to grow. I just never get the garden I’ve always wanted. But, I have learned some tricks that I’ll pass onto you.

Read more: http://www.motherearthnews.com/organic-gardening/sales-and-seed-banks-zbcz1407.aspx#ixzz39agPiP8s