Tuesday, April 5, 2011

gee, I think you're swell

We have baby goats, which I wasn't expecting for another two weeks. It's not good that I wasn't out there until they were dry. Two of them are be-bopping around like they're supposed to, but the third is a little sketchy. We almost lost her yesterday, but crisis was averted thanks to Magic Wendy and her cayenne tincture. We'll have to keep a close eye on her, but yesterday afternoon she was able to drink from a bottle, and last night she even nursed on her own, and can sort of stand up now. She also pooped on my glove, which is gross, but it does mean that something's moving through there. I just got in from checking them, and she seems to be a little bit better, though she still needs help finding the teat. Baby goats are idiots, and there is nothing more frustrating than trying to help them eat. It's probably microhusbanding, but I like to make sure I see each baby eating on its own, and sometimes they just need a little assistance figuring out where the spigot is. They squirm around and fight you while you're trying to guide them in the right direction, then they yell about how hungry they are, often while the teat is in their mouth.

I hope they all live--three girls is extraordinary luck. Now we get to name them, which you know is my favorite part.

Last night we disbudded the magic neighbors' goats--two bucklings, too bad for them--and one of them is unbelievably gorgeous. His ears are brown with black edging, he has a white splash down the side--I'll just have to take a picture so you'll believe me. Our little collective may want to keep him intact, so we have two completely unrelated lines running in our herds.

Also it looks like we'll be getting bees this spring. The collective wants to do a different style of hive that doesn't throw off as much honey, but it's plenty for a family, and is much less stressful for the bees. And since bees in general are not really in a great emotional place right now, that's fine with me.

I don't know if I've mentioned this, but I feel incredibly lucky and blessed that we moved here, to a place that has a bunch of other hippies who want to garden and raise goats and chickens and bees and pigs (someday!), and be responsible and respectful about it. We are a bunch of weird losers, and we glory and revel in it. You watch, we're going to be mind-melding next.

I'll get some pictures of the babies once it's light and you can be jealous of our agrarian utopia.


Barbie said...

Congratulations on your new kids! I can't wait to see pictures. Even though baby goats aren't always the smartest they are really cute! Also three girls is great luck. So is having like minded neighbors.

tipsybaker said...

Pictures! And you need to help me out here -- how do I know if my goats are pregnant? Is there a way short of a sonogram or blood test? Maybe I'll just go out there on June 1 and there'll be kids.

Layne said...

Tipsy--are they way fatter than usual? I guess it's still early, if they're not due until June. But as they get closer, they should look quite fat, and their udders will fill up. Also you can get behind them, bend over and hug them under the rib cage, and gradually work your hug backward toward the tail. You may be able to feel knobby, bumpy stuff instead of guts, and that means there are babies. Plus if your neighbors see you doing it it looks awesome.

highdeekay said...

Your cooperative is prolly for the best. Had we successfully created the VM compound you'd just be frustrated every time I opened a can and called it an ingredient or when one of the other wives let the kids all play Wii all the time or when none of us were willing to slog the pig pens. Yup, I think you landed in the right place with the right people. :)

Sarah said...

Can't wait to see pictures and find out their names! How exciting to have an early arrival of three girls. So cool. Good luck with all the extra work :)