Well, so far there is ONE very lovely buckling. Welcome the arrival of the first 2012 kid here at Cornerstone Acres. Rosie graced us with a beautiful little buckling - officially named CSA Yukon. Ruby is still busting at the seams. I had hoped they had taken early in their exposure to Challenger, but I had to resign myself to the fact that wasn't the case. They had to wait until the weather got REALLY cold. Rosie had her kid while we were gone picking up the new puppy. Yukon was already up and about by the time we arrived back home. He had also decided he would sneak thru the gate and go visit the other goats! He is the most active kid we've had to date on the farm - quite a gregarious fellow. Weighing in at 10.25# at birth and up to 11.5# within the first 36 hours...he's a good eater for sure!! Rosie is being a very attentive and protective mom - she doesn't miss a thing, she makes sure to warn any cat, dog or other goat that Yukon is HER baby and she isn't ready to share yet. Rosie does have extra teats, which is not an ideal trait - but all are working and Yukon hasn't had any issues with nursing. I do however think I will milk Rosie this lactation as I have already started to dry off our milking doe, Lily. She is very willing to allow me to milk her and I have already put away 10 oz of colostrum just in case we may need it someday.
Ruby is quite large again this pregnancy, but can't really tell if she's any bigger than the last one. Last spring she gave me, Snapdragon, a lovely single doeling. I am hoping for another doe (or two) from her this year. I'd like to add another of her doelings to our breeding line up. As of today her udder has swelled to giant size and her ligaments seem to be gone. I'm going to have another one of those long nights tonight!!
Although this isn't generally a "nice" topic, I am hoping to FINALLY try goat meat this year. Our goats sold so well last year we didn't have a chance to even think of putting one into our own freezer. I may try raising one of the boys for our freezer this year. I'm thinking that if Lily gives me another boy as large as the one last year, he'll be the freezer candidate winner. Besides if he's a pretty as the last one, he'll make a nice little rug or wall hanging.
We have decided to sell off one of our Yorkshire/Old Spot gilts for somebody elses freezer and process the other one here at home. We will do our own cutting, curing, processing and smoking. Even if we don't do a great job, we will have lots more practice when we have our first litter of AHH. Unfortunately I don't think we will get much lard off the york/old spot cross we will be slaughtering, perhaps that is a peril of raising pigs in the winter months?
Working on the garden plan for spring...going to have to get seeds started soon. With the odd winter we've been having it's hard to decide if we will have an early or late spring. As soon as we have a plan in place I will be sure to share it with you.
Thanks for checking in and until next time......