Monday, November 10, 2008



Another grey 50F day, with the sun struggling to come through the overcast, and intermittent drizzle.

The animal day started off with cat puke. Oh, that is always a bad sign. The bright cheery Willow (the only morning person in the family) pointed out that at least it was just at the edge of the step, not catapulted (excuse the pun) off the edge onto my robe and half-filled box of Hallowe'en decorations. Yes, sure, a bright side to puke. :P

The Firebird slept in and said he wasn't feeling up to chores, so Willow and I tackled them late. I opted to do some hooves while I was out.

Caesar front and back.

Obiwan finished him off with his back feet.

Anaken front feet done, with back still on the to-do list. Above is a pic of Ani (his nickname). He was the runt out of twenty alpine bucklings at an auction last year. He was very wild. He was the last goat auctioned, and I succumbed to the saplings pleas, but then tried to trade him before I even paid for him. I had tried to handle him in the pen and knew he was very shy. Well, no one wanted to trade for the runt, so we ended up with him. It took me a couple weeks of goat whispering to tame him, and now he is the sweetest thing. He still startles easily, though. He did not produce much cashmere last year-not suprising for the breed-maybe a sandwich bag of very short short fine fiber, with mostly guard hair.

We grained the wethers first. Willow insisted on feeding Caesar and he knocked the dish out of her hand causing half of it to hit the ground. She headed back for more grain to replace it while I did his feet.

Then we moved on to the little goats. I opted to hop the electric wire with the grain bucket, instead of battling the whole herd. Usually the saplings have most of the goats tied by the time I am through with the wethers, and I use the gate. I caught my shoelace on some goatwood just as I stepped over, and was sent sprawling. The lid burst off the grain bucket, and the can of chicken goodies went flying into the woods.

I left it to one of the roosters who was following me, and set the bucket down outside the gate. I told Willow to get more grain while I started tying little goats. I opened the gate and had a massive crush of goats. I was holding the gate with one hand, and grabbing horns and shoving goats with the other.

Anna, with her short horns, ducked by and made it through the gate, but not before I could grab one of her back legs. I dragged her back through while two or three more were making the push. Finally Derek burst by me and I let him go and secured the gate. No way could I get him back in with all the other ones there trying to escape. Willow secured the lid on the grain bucket and went for more chicken grain.

I started tying goats, and then Willow was mobbed by Derek when she came back with the grain, so I told her to stash it on the rabbit hutch. Phew!

After all that, the rest of it went pretty well, except I realized I was needing hay for tomorrow. After goat chores we jumped in the car to go on a quick PO-meat for dinner-hay run. That turned into a three hour long trip, as I had a check arrive early and decided to take it down to the bank, since tomorrow is a holiday. The bank is about a forty minute round trip.

The sun is going down as I type-the day surely went by fast.

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