“A day in the country is worth a month in town”Christina Rossetti

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Goat Flirting and The Shed Demolition Continues

It seems hard to believe how easy it is to spot a goat in heat once you know what you are looking for. I now realize that some of the girls are more aggressive then others, just like people. The short video below shows a bit of the tail wagging that the females do.

Well, as we work around the barn and house on this nasty day, Dave let me know that Vinnie was in heat. I bet he never though he'd know this much about a goats reproductive habits.

Vinegar, I will say in my limited experience, has been the least demonstrative. I expected that she would be more vocal since she usually is anyway.


Should you be concerned about Bucky and his being alone, just know he is continuing on the shed renovation, so that, according to Dave, he can see the girls completely.

He may have regretted loosing the one side this afternoon as the rain turned sleety. He and Vinnie were both trying to squeeze into the one corner that is left to stay dry. As a rule, goats prefer shelter when its precipitating hard.


Saturday, November 29, 2008

Give Thanks for Leftovers

Mia satisfied after enjoying the turkey leftovers

Snickers cleaning up what Pekoe didn't in the cat food dish.

Our barn cats are not allowed in the house and seem to be in a routine of going into the barn at night like all the other animals. They can get out through some corners, but I hope they are working the night shift in the barn eliminating the rodents there. In the barn they are protected from the elements, and there is their dry food feeder and water, when it doesn't freeze. If it is frozen, they already have been drinking out of the chicken water which is now in an electric heated bowl.

When we have some tasty morsels, we call the cats for this treat. I want them to come when called especially since they need to be caught for the occasional vet visit. Snickers had her second set of shots this week and was very good waiting on my lap at the vet's. She is a sweet kitten, but not when she has a kill or a piece of turkey skin. She growls if her mother or anyone gets near her meat. I think we lucked out with these two cats for the barn and garden. They are on the hunt constantly.
Bucky isn't eating turkey, but we found he likes our goat mix.
Hence the lip licking.

Thursday, November 27, 2008


Bucky is looking very handsome today.
The shed is getting more renovations.

The alley from the power lines.

The west fence line.

Mia joining the morning walk.

Today looks more like Christmas.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Bucky Makes An Impression

Since all our goats thus far have been gentle even though they are strong as can be, we didn't anticipate the determination and strength of a buck. Everyone has their buck stories. After 24 hours, so do we.This morning, Bucky was in the main part of the barn after pushing the door off its bottom hinges and walking out underneath it. Needless to say, we have been making changes to the barn today. The door was switched and reinforced. I hope it holds.

Speckles was wailing and yelling this morning and then when she got in the field, she started wagging her tail and just stood at the fence staring at Bucky. As soon as I let her into the alley so that she could walk along the fence by Bucky, he started with his talking and "dating". I let them in together and it was only seconds before the mating began.

Speckles has already has twins this year, a buck and a doe. I hope she can do the same for us.

But even though Bucky was busy with Speckles most of the day, he started the day enlarging the hole in the side of his shed using his head and horns. By this evening, there were two significant holes - one on each side. He can't be doing it because of the 20 degree temperatures!

Tonight the new door looked like it would hold up. I won't be surprised if he finds another way out though.

I want to thank Matt for letting us use his buck.

Matt - we are learning a lot.

Just a little cold morning video. As we watched him destroy one more thing, I think we were in a bit of shock!

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Bucky Boy Is Here!

The girls got to go back to their old pasture with its new fencing. Even with the snow cover, they were very busy eaters and have had their heads down all day.
Matt brought over Buck or Bucky Boy as I call him. We bought his love with some nice hay and he's been softly talking all day.

Bucky Boy finally relaxed enough to eat a bit of the grass in his area.
His horns and beard are impressive. He is about 1 1/2 years old.
The does have walked over and taken a look at Bucky, but I think they are down wind from his scent, which is STRONG, so they haven't made much of a fuss yet. He has been showing some interest, but I think he is just getting acclimated today.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Ten Minutes

I had been out walking this morning and wanted to take some pictures of the goats from the hill. It was an interesting perspective. Also I was hoping the group of ducks were still on the pond.

I was noticing that since the snow was white, the goats no longer look as white. Sort of cream.

I got a bit distracted by the snow on the dried Joe Pye Weed and all the muted, somber colors...

I love how all the grays and the lines and textures work here.
Snickers joined us on this walk and tested her jumping ability...

and the temperament of Jock.
I also wanted to get a shot or two of the completed fences, although the lighting is not the best.
In the ten minutes from the first picture, the weather suddenly changed and as you can see we got some more snow.

I never made it up to the hill for the other picture. Another day.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Fencing - The Final Chapter

Well, not really the final chapter since I haven't taken pictures of the final product. I guess when the goats are in there its real.
The alley waiting for the tension and gates.
We had one problem that had to be fixed this morning. When Dave hooked up the charger Saturday, the fence worked - too well. There are six wires. Only four are meant to be hot. All of them were coming up hot and the posts were snapping and sparking. Turns out that the one hot wire was twisted around two others in the far corner.

Jock learning to stay away from the taught wires.

It was a quick fix with the right tools. The only problem then was that they couldn't get up the hill because the grass was slick from the snow and wetness. A little rain and snow makes a mess in a hurry.

These two short clips will show you the finishing touches being done to get the gates in and a shot of the center alley.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Winter Cloud Art

Parts of the sky looked like it was burned.

If this was the west I'd be hopeful, but its the east.
Final goodbye to fall weather.

I remember trying to paint like this in watercolor class.

Snow tomorrow.

Friday, November 14, 2008

More fencing - Its starting to look real

We dug a trench to power up the upper paddocks.

The CAT with some of our wire.

Getting ready for bracing and gates.

Six strands of high tensile wire. Four hot.

The right side is the tool with our spacing.

The left side shows the wire with insulation on the hot wires.
Tom and his cigar - spacing the wires and adding insulators as he staples.
The last piece of corral fence being wired.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Fencing continued

I have been trying to keep up and things have been busy. This is a couple days behind - maybe a week. Some pictures.

Friday - finishing the perimeter posts.

The "high security" area.

Braces being built.

Woven wire to keep the kids and bucks in. Works on chickens too.

We were away for day four of the work and day five we were doing our part of the project which was preparing the connection for the charger and shopping for a charger
Tom and the ever present cigar.