Thursday, March 25

Green greenhouse - clean goats

We've got the first coat of paint on the greenhouse now...  So it'll be a green greenhouse when all is said and done.  The weather is supposed to be beautiful tomorrow as I sit at my desk (or more likely a conference table) for several hours.  The weather folks are predicting rain this weekend so that means I'll have to find something other than the greenhouse to work on.  It'll be the perfect time to finish up the three new calf stalls.  We have converted the last of the hay storage area in the old barn to bedding area for the goats.  Part of that area will house three new calf or kidding stalls similar to the ones I built before.  We've got the other six stalls occupied with a couple Jersey calves and some other calves that belong to a neighbor.  Jennifer has gotten quite the reputation for working with animals in this area.  Because of that we've worked out a trade of sorts for her to raise four Holstein calves for them.  We've got them all bucket trained now so it's not as much work as bottle feeding them.  

Several people have commented to us "bottle calves are too much work" or that there is "not enough money in them."  We've found that it's not really all that much work and that we actually made decent money on the last round.  I guess when you consider what most people do after their day job hours it might be quite a bit of work, but such is farm life, and it's considerably more rewarding for us to see a good job done versus keeping up with a TV series (for example).

In other news the rain and snow of the past 60 to 90 days is taking a toll on the usual stomping grounds of the goats.  One thing I've learned that I don't think most people realize is goats prefer not to get dirty if at all possible.  The area where we feed the goats has become a muddy mess, so for our sake and the goat's sake I laid down some 2x8's to walk on.  I shot this video of me calling the goats through the muddy area.  Watch as they carefully walk the planks to avoid the worst part of the mud.  Oh, and please excuse the volume, pitch, and general annoying noise that I make.  It's the call our goats are used to hearing but it always sounds much better when my wife does it!

Lately my analytics show a steady increasing stream of traffic.  Who are all you folks, be sure to leave a comment and let me know what you think, what you'd like to see more of (or less of), and if you've got a blog I should have on my list!


polly's path said...

I am sure the goats are grateful for your efforts to keep them somewhat clean! We enjoyed our one day of snow but I can see how too much of it can slow things down on a farm.
Love the green greenhouse.

brentcu said...

You've also got 18 subscribers in Google Reader who likely don't show up in your blog analytics.

Amy McPherson Sirk said...

Who am I? I'm a follower as of today. I'm a geek who lives in a very small town and is slowly migrating towards farming. I don't consider what I do now to be farming because my efforts feed only my family. We've added laying hens this year but I'll have to move out of town if I want to go any further. My "real" job is machine embroidery design. Very geeky. Thanks for creating this blog. I'm enjoying reading it.

Duane Keys said...

Polly, it's really all for the goats! :)

brentc and Amy, thanks for stopping by and announcing yourselves! :)

Amy, feeding your own family definitely counts as farming in my book. That's way more than most folks can say.