Ringing in the New Crazy.

Happy 2013, chickeneers!!! May she be kind to us all, and we kind to each other. And may there be chickens, and may their eggs be plentiful!

We had quite an eventful New Year’s Day here at Heedley’s Hens. For those of you not following us on Facebook, here is the abridged version:

SQUEEEEE!!

0113 Mae in Annex

THUD.

0113 Maes first egg

Yes, you read that right: today, the first day of this, the Year of Our Lord two thousand and thirteen, Mae, the 33-week-old Easter Egger, did bestow upon me mine very first ever blue egg. Verily, I did plotz.

It’s perfect, if small. Truth be told, it’s not even a small; it’s a peewee. But, hey! It’s a little girl’s very first egg! Back off!!

The Stepdaughters are thrilled, and have made me promise to keep it intact until they return back to our house. I’m not sure I’ll ever be able to crack it, frankly.

But that is not the meaning of today’s post heading. That, gentle reader, refers to my next next crazy coming down the pipe. No, not the heritage turkeys; that’s the next crazy. The next next crazy is…

Goats.

You heard me. I have a sudden passion for dairy goats. Now, this might not seem so very crazy to those of you already residing in Goat World, but, let me assure you, it is batshit crazy. Milking goats? Moi?! Have you met me?

Forget milking; turns out there ain’t no milk without babies, which is painfully obvious, and yet I still had to ask, publicly, yet. So, milking goats also means breeding goats, with all the terrors and stresses that implies. I don’t know nothin’ about birthin’ no goats, Miss Scarlet. The learning curve will be precipitous. Insane. Batshit.

Mind you, this is 2014’s crazy, at the earliest. 2013 is for sorting out the turkey crazy, and there is no way on God’s green earth that I can even consider this farce without three things: a great deal of research; a comprehensive fence; the emptying and organisation of the barn. I’m concentrating on the first one, for now.

I bought a well-reviewed book, Storey’s Guide to Raising Dairy Goats, and am slowly making my way through it. I think I might want Nigerian Dwarf goats, although my goat guru Tricia finds their teats on the small side for milking. Ahem.

Oh, it’s all too preposterous for words. When I find the whole idea overwhelming and impossible, I tell myself that goats are fun pets, that goat’s milk is, in some ways, more nutritious and more easily-digestible than cow’s milk, and that I would really like to learn to make goat cheese, goat yogurt, and goat milk soap.

So, speak up, chickeneers: any goatherds out there?

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11 thoughts on “Ringing in the New Crazy.

  1. Congrats on your bluegreen egg! This is, I think, a true new year gift! (I’ve heard a lot of EE keepers saying they are finicky layers!)
    (I was given 9 hens in later October – including 2 EE”s. It seems I have one EE that lays pinkish eggs and one that lays the lightest green – she laid only 2 before it got cold and not one since).

    As for the goats, i AM CERTAIN WE’RE ALL CRAZY or headed that way.
    I also want them (especially since they would help clear the oak brush & we had 5 fires around us last summer!)- but like you I don’t know nuthin’ bout ’em. I love the pretty ones with all their colors and spots (Fainting goats?) and those with the long horns and hair… but like you I am torn between what I want/can afford/is around here/is practical, and the ignorance of my ‘dreams’ about raising and milking them… and don’t EVEN get me started on MILKING PARLORS!

    I look forward to your continued quest to hash this venture out.

  2. What a great way to start 2013!!

    I do not have goats. I want them, but have been told time and time again that they are destructive. I didn’t want to keep them out of the flower garden – so we got sheep instead. Sheep can also be used for milk – but also fibre as well. My sheep are very friendly like goats – and were bottle fed. I mainly got them for my Great Pyr who needed a bigger livestock to bond to.


    They sure are adorable.

    Oh and billy goats stink to high heaven. They pee all over themselves and are rank. I would get girls and get a stud in when you want to breed them, or take them somewhere – or even AI. But unless you have somewhere you can keep your Billy out of the main barn – I would not get one.

      • You can get goats here that are already in milk. Having a buckling or doling would require you to bottle feed if you wanted to milk their mother. Which is a lot of work. Not to mention that you’d get attached. Come on.. Who wouldn’t? Baby goats are so friendly! Unless you sold them straight away (the babies).

        I don’t think you’re crazy – and am happy to hear you would not keep a billy goat!

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