1. Goats: I posted Jayne's photo on the Dairy Goat board yesterday, because he's HUGE. One member asked if I knew how much he weighed. Well, no - but I have a tape measure, and Goat Connection has a handy inches to weight chart, so...out I went. (No sling for my scale - yet. We're working on that!)
I measured Jayne. At 26 or so hours old, he was 15.75" around (behind the forelegs - the "heart girth"). Hmmm....for comparison, I measured Calvin. He measures about 16.75" - 17" around. Just for grins, I measured Hobbes, too. About 13.5" or so. OK......I go to the iPhone (I have the chart bookmarked; I'm gonna print it out later today) - Hobbes, at 6 days old is 9 pounds. Calvin, at 3 weeks + 3 days, is 17 pounds. Jayne, at 28 hours old, is *13* pounds. Yup, he's a big 'un!
1a. This led to a phone conference with Sweet Geek, and a call to our breeder. What we have decided to do is keep Jayne a buck - for now. (We need 20 goats, remember?) Breed him to Annie, Calvin's dam (and get a NOA Nubian, since he can't be registered), and to LaDue, Sunny, and River (Hobbes' twin) to try and improve our Cashmere's udders. Breed Calvin to Zorra and Mocha, and breed Hobbes to Kaylee and Saffron. NEXT year, Hobbes breeds the same, plus Jayne's Cashubian kids. Jayne gets Calvin's kids + Annie, Calvin gets Zorra and Mocha, and Annie's NOA kids (if doelings). Keep up the cross- and in-breeding, with the hopes that 3 years/generations down the line we get some Cashmere does with good - not necessarily outstanding, but good - udders.
We WILL be culling heavily. NO bucklings will be kept, and we'll only keep the Cashmere-type doelings. (The Nubians are another story...we're thinking on that). This is a long-term project (should we be here for it :wink:) IF all goes well, we'll get back to good Cashmere (Hobbes is from 2 outstanding parents - Sunny has 16-count fiber, and Nano, his sire has 15.5-count, so...he should be a FANTASTIC buck), but they'll retain the dairy-style udders (and maybe confirmation). Yes, this means we'll have 3 breeding herds. :shrug: It's only an issue during rut, and we have the space (and the few numbers!) to make it work. :fingers crossed: Once the udders are improved, we can go to breeding strictly from the Cashmere pool - since Cashmere's are a *type* and not a breed (so far :heh:), the fiber is what counts, NOT the parentage.
2. ADGA: :sigh: Sweet Geek wanted to join, because of Annie and Mocha. OK-dokey. We applied online. A few days later, I got an email saying that the application had been processed, but we needed to go here, or direct to the membership site here (2 active links, got that?). What would be your first response? Me? I clicked the link.
Huh. Got a System Run-time Error. OK...maybe they mis-typed it. Happens. Clicked the other link - same error. Well.....OK, maybe the server is down. I went directly to the website, and clicked the "Members Only" link. Huh - I don't have a membership ID or PIN. Wonder if those can be found on the page I can't access? (*Some* sites do that - you sign up, they send you a link to a private page with your info.)
So, I emailed them back, with a screenshot of the error message. I got a....rather curt email back saying that, duh, stupid - until you get your packet you CAN'T sign in!!!
NOWHERE in the original email did it say that. :sigh:
We get the packet. I now have an ID number, but no PIN. Turns out you have to sign a card and mail it back before they will send you a PIN. :bangs head: I do this, we both sign (since the membership is in both names) and mail it in last week. On the SAME day, I apply online for our Herd Name (they REQUIRE you to have a herd name. Otherwise, all your goats' registered names will begin with "THE"......this is really stupid, BTW, but whatever - they want all the registered goats to have Herd Names attached. You also have to tatoo them, so I'm not sure WHY you have to have a herd name, too) I give them my CC#, and all is good, right?
Well, yesterday I get an email saying that they had completed the processing of order #blahblah. "The following was added to the statement: PLEASE SEE ENCLOSED SIGNATURE CARD INFORMATION. THANK YOU" followed by the same 2 links I got before, that I CANNOT ACCESS.
Problem: This is an email. There IS no enclosure or attachment. WTH? So...I call.
I am told that this is in regards to our PIN application (that I MAILED in WITH the Signature Card.). They don't have a sig. card (same envelope, people!) And - I love this - "The email TOLD you what to do". Ummm, no - I can't access the links because I don't have a PIN, and you say you can't send it without the signature card that was enclosed in the envelope WITH the application, and BTW, what about my Herd Name?
She was nice, at least - we have our herd name, and I will be faxing a sig. card (AND another PIN application) as soon as Sweet Geek signs it today at lunch. I just wish they'd get their act together - email is NOT the same as snail-mail. Ah, well...
3. Goat TV: While on the phone with our breeder last night, I started laughing so hard I had to hang up. The goats were outside - LaDue, Kaylee, Saffron, Calvin, Sunny, Hobbes, River, Annie and Mocha, all standing around, cudding happily. The kids were bouncing around - and Kaylee decided she HAD to get on Mama's back. She boing'd up, got her forelegs on LaDue's back, and fell. Shook off, boing'd again...over and over and over. It was HYSTERICAL. When she got tired of that, she went over and jumped on Calvin. :lol: Then all the kids would bounce around, and she'd start in on Mama again. Hobbes was perfecting his sideways bounce, Calvin was just bouncing, ears going all over, and River and Saffron were standing in the corner of the barn gossiping and sharing new bounce techniques. :snicker: I tried to get some photos, but my camera is too slow to catch all the action - Sweet Geek WILL be setting up his tonight for me. :lol:
4. Barn: I'll be working on the milkroom again this weekend, while Sweet Geek runs fence. I want to get the wall by "my" milkstand done, so I can hang my Goat Calendar. Yesterday, I printed off labels - "Corid", "Worm", and "Trim" - so I can mark when these things have to be done. The labels are the return address ones, and there's room to write *who* needs these things done. (I need to do one that says "Shots", because there are some vaccinations I need to give) The calendar is now all marked up (well, thru June, anyway!), I just need to get it hung.
5. I think there is no 5. Carry on! :lol:
6. Bullseye was down in the pasture last night, but he got up (slowly) and ambled up to eat dinner. This morning, Dusty was down....I hope it's just the Spring grass. He wasn't in pain; there was no grunting or groaning, just sighs. What pawing he did wasn't pain-pawing, it was more like...."I'm trying to find a soft spot to lay down" pawing. When he went down, he didn't roll, he just lay down. :sigh: I keep telling myself that Dusty is now 23 - he's in good health, yes, but he's OLD. I could hear his joints creak...I need to get him back on the Joint Cookies. It's hard, watching your oldest friend get old and creaky. :sigh: He wasn't interested in breakfast..which is odd, but not scary-odd (if that makes sense).
Think that's it - I need to get to work!