Sunday, January 16, 2011

Moving the Kids to the Nursery and More Kids

Eventually the time comes for the kids to go to the kid nursery in the basement of the house and the milking does to go back to work producing delicious milk for drinking and making wonderful yogurts and cheeses.  But, for a while their milk will be used to bottle feed the kids. Several of the kids will be going to new homes soon too.

I like to leave the kids with their momma for at least 3 days.  That gives them time to get the colostrum and nurse as often as they want.  And, gives the does a chance to be a momma and recuperate after giving birth.

Toward the end of last week we began moving the kids into the kid nursery in the basement of our house and taking the momma's back out to the big goat pens/yards.  I'm milking the mommas in the milk parlor twice a day again.  Vacation over - back to work!

For more about the kid nursery you can read my post from last year when I built the New Kid Nursery .  The pine chip bedding we cleaned out of the kid nursery pens from last kidding season made wonderful mulch for my fruit trees!

When I move the kids, I protect them from the cold winter temperatures by laying them down in a couple of gym bags to carry them to the house.

 Stuffing kids into the gym bag - 2 kids in

 Stuffing kids into the gym bag - 3 kids in

I carry them into the house and down to the kid nursery in the basement.  Here is the first 5.  These are Myrtle's and Valery's kids.

 Kids in the bags

Unzipping Myrtle's kids

 Valery's boys

 Welcome to your new home kids!

 Mrytle's and Valery's kids on the left - Liz's and Lilah's kids on the right

On Friday my good friend, Tonia and her daughters from The Simple Life , came to play with the kids and help me move the next batches of kids into the kid nursery.  Thank you Tonia, Candice, Kara, and Kyla!

 Playing with the babies

 Oreo's and Tiffany's babies

 Holly's babies

Mom lives with me and she takes care of feeding the bottle babies once they're in the nursery.  You can read her thoughts on feeding the kids here Feeding the Kids - Mom's perspective  I help feed the babies every chance I get too.

Here is Mom feeding this year's babies.  It sometimes takes a couple of days to get them used to taking their momma's milk from a bottle and it can be frustrating when they want to buck like a little rodeo bronc horse.  But, Mom is persistent about getting more milk inside them than on herself!  In no time at all they learn to take the bottle and suck it dry very quickly.

 Mom bottle feeding the kids

Lots of kids to feed!


With the kids in the nursery and the mommas out in the big goat pens, room was made for the next pregnant does to come into the kidding pens for delivery.

Early Saturday morning, I checked the does and found Precious in labor as soon as I walked into the barn.  She easily delivered twin doelings.  Precious is a registered Pureblood LaMancha.2 year old 2nd freshener.  RC is the sire of her kids.

 Precious and her babies

 Breakfast with momma

All dried off - bellies full - ready for a nap

There weren't any more does in labor on Saturday until just as the sun was setting.  This is of course the time I'm doing the evening chores.

I had just stepped back into the barn from feeding the bucks and yearling does.  I found Mom at the end of the barn hall petting Angel. (Angel's Story).  We talked a minute and I heard Vanessa grunting.  I told Mom that we were about to have more kids.  She stayed and watched Vanessa deliver her first baby and went to the house to warm up.

Vanessa is a registered Pureblood LaMancha. 2 year old first freshener.  She also easily delivered her kids.  Both were in perfect birthing presentation.  RC is also the sire of her kids.

 Vanessa and her first born doeling

 Vanessa and her baby girl and baby boy

 Almost all dried off

Hey! Did you see my babies?

After Vanessa delivered, I went on with the evening chores which included milking the does in the parlor.  I had the first group in, milked and back out to their pen when I heard JoJo grunting with labor contractions.

While I was watching her to see how close to delivery she was ... I heard Coco grunting too.  Two does in labor at the same time again!  This felt like a re-run of the day before when Mocha and Kit were in labor at the same time ... and on opposite sides of the barn!  Same story with JoJo and Coco!  JoJo is on the East side and Coco is on the West side of the barn.

After watching them and going back and forth several times ... it looked like Coco was going to deliver fist.  She is a 2 year old 2nd freshener (LaMancha/Togginburg cross).  RC is the sire of her kids.  She easily delivered a little doeling first.  I watched to be sure the baby was fine and Coco was cleaning her baby before I went back to check on JoJo.

 Coco and her little girl

By the time I got back over to JoJo's kidding pen, she was pushing out this little cream colored doeling. JoJo is a 2 year old 2nd freshener.  She is 3/4 LaMancha and 1/4 Nubian.  She is Opal's daughter from 2 seasons ago.  RC is the sire of her kids.

 JoJo and her baby girl

It was only a minute later that she delivered her second doeling.  She is cream colored too. 

JoJo and her 2 little girls

JoJo was taking good care of her babies. 

I went back over to Coco's kidding pen to watch her deliver her second baby.  Her second baby is a blue gray buckling.  He is a really pretty color.

Coco and her twins

Here is Coco this morning (Sunday) 
Her babies are all nice and dry with bellies full.

Nap time!

Here is JoJo this morning (Sunday) with her baby girls

I got out to the barn a little late this morning. It was almost 8:00 before I woke up.  I guess I was a little tired! Anyway ... when I got out there ... Chloie had delivered twins!  One boy and one girl.  They have beautiful markings.

Chloie is a 3 year old and this is her 3rd freshening. She is LaMancha/Nubian cross.  Nate is the sire of her kids.

 Chloie and her twins

 It looks like Chloie's boy is talking to Coco's babies on the other side of the fence!

The rest of the day went along without any more deliveries.  The milking momma does gave me 5 gallons of milk this morning and 3 gallons tonight.  They're keeping just ahead of the demands of the 34 babies in the nursery ... who get bottles 3 times a day.

Thanks to Mom for preparing and warming their bottles and taking the time to feed all of them at 7am, 3pm, and 10pm.  Mom will be 73 next month and does pretty good carrying the cooler (to keep them warm) of bottles down the stairs and feeding the babies.

I was watching the pregnant does in the kidding pens before coming into the house tonight (Sunday).  I wanted to be sure none of them was in labor before I left the barn.  That's when I saw Kit's 4 kids playing "King of the Mountain" on her back.  They were so funny dancing around on her.

 Little girl in front, Big sister on top of momma

One of the brothers takes the top of the momma mountain!

Kit was a good sport about the game for a little while.  But, she stood up ending the game after being pounced on so many times by her kids.

Well, kidding season started here on the farm last Saturday the 8th and today, on the 16th, we have a total of 50 kids ... 25 girls and 25 boys!  As soon as their horns are disbudded in a day or so, a good number of them will be going to their new homes.  I'm sure Mom will be glad to be feeding less babies. 

There's only 5 does left to kid in this round of kidding.  Then they're giving me a 2 week break before the next 5 goes into the kidding pens.  After that the first fresheners start kidding on the last week in February.



~Tonia said...

Wow!! I cant believe the even numbers between the boys and girls!I hope you get some rest!Chloie's babies are pretty.. Of course none of them are ugly!lol

Anonymous said...

I love the kids in the duffel bags! How funny is it that you're even on bucks and does so far? That's like the ideal season!

the Goodwife said...

My hat is off to your momma! I couldn't even handle bottle feeding two babies and had to sell them almost as soon as I got them, LOL! You are so clever to put the kids in the duffel bags. I had visions of baby goats in purses in a store....too funny! You are a busy busy couple of ladies!

Joanna@BooneDocksWilcox said...

When is your book going to be published? Put me on the waiting list. :-)

OurCrazyFarm said...

Thanks for sharing all these deliveries with us Brenda! It has been so fun to see all your little kids! Way to go Mom! We have bottle fed 12 calves at once before and I thought that would do us all in:))

Marg said...

This is my 3rd year feeding the bottle babies. Of these thirty some babies, I still have 5 that think they are a mule instead of a kidling, as they try to buck and wiggle off my lap being too stuborn to accept the bottle of milk and refuse to drink from it. So I thought up a new attack to the problem, I call it churning. I hold the nipple in their mouth and shake the end of the bottle, like churning in a jar for Mama when I was a little girl. They have learned how to resist that too, by holding their tongue up tight against their goozler so they don't have to swallow much of the milk. But after close to an hour it seems, I have enough down them. I keep churning til I have at least half a bottle down them. With each feeding, I am sure they will turn more into a baby goat and are going to freely drink their milk. Most start out fine and grab the bottle and slurp down the whole thing in a jiffy.
I got to bed last night at 2a.m. and up this morning at 6 to start the routine all over again, was hard to get around and get started. It took 5 hours this morning to get the first feeding done. But I know Brenda doesn't have the time with all the barn stuff to do, so I keep doing the best I can. I am just glad I can help her out.
I think the babies are so precous and cute. I have some favorite ones this year, I like the little blue one, the red foxy color, and the white ear brown with white spots. Then the ones out of black and white buck Nate look like little skunks with the stripes down their faces. Then of those, the white on three, is a light blue frosty color.
Then there is a brown with white spots kid that likes to dance and show off a bit. The way I can tell her apart is that she has a wide # one down her forehead.
With 5 or 6 kids in each pen, it is easy to get them mixed up as to whom has been fed. So I go by the color markings on the solid color body and head. There are 4 brown with white spots on them that look all alike, except their face markings are a little different, like the one with the #1 down her forehead, well another of the spotted ones has a skinny #1 going across her forehead. One of those spotted ones has white ears, so she is easly different. I feed my favorite ones first in each pen.
I feed an interesting one out of nate that is black with the blue frosting. It is a lover, and stands up with it's fnont feet on my knees and stretches up and gives me kisses. It is so smart.
Well I better not write a lot, but thks for all your comments, we love to read them. Hope you all are blessed in this new year of 2011 and may God Bless and keep you healthy, wealthy, and wise.

Texan said...

ok I am wore out and they are not my does or my kids and I am not bottle feeding them ... still I am wore out lol...

Wow lots and lots of kids!

Feral Female said...

The kids in the duffel bags are just too adorable! You surely are hopping now Brenda. Bottle feeding so many must be a full time job!

Verde Farm said...

Holy Cow--or should I say Holy Goat! This is to cool. I can’t believe you can get all those kids into a gym bag--that is amazing. They are precious. What a momma you have--that is a full time job I bet with so many kids. Great she enjoys helping you. You are busy, busy women with all these kids-including the momma goats :)