It has been so hot!! The humidity is high and the last couple of days including today have hit the 100 mark. With all the rain we have had, plus the heat, equals PARASITE heaven. We have had a lot of problems with parasites (intestinal worms) since the first of June. It has hit hard and fast. We have lost 3 young goats. They are fine one day, show some loose stool and are gone by the next day. The young are the most susceptible.
The pictures above are of Blue and her quints (the fifth one moved out of the picture). They are half Boer and see how big they have grown already. I am supplementing 3 of them once or twice a day. They attack their mom like sharks and fight over the 2 teats if their bellies are not full. The three hanging through the pen are the bottle babies looking for me to feed them. They are all for sale and all have blue eyes. The bottle babies consist of one doe and two bucks. The smallest one with the dark head is a buck. Email me if anyone is interested at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
I have a couple of young Nigerian Does who are new and we have put them in a pen to dry lot them. Dry lot means to remove from pasture and feed hay. This eliminates the chance for them to become infested with parasites and gives them time to grow up and develop their immune system. I also have my new Cheviot rams on dry lot and in the pecan orchard shade. They came from Washington State. They have not been exposed to the southern parasites and I want them to acclimate slowly. Last summer I lost an expensive Mini Cheviot ram due to parasites and do not want that to happen again.
The most susceptible livestock are the yearling sheep with lambs. They are still growing and nursing a baby. They need to watched the closest and have their eye lids checked weekly. The goats are most suceptible when they are 4 months to under a year. They don't always show signs of illness until it is to late.
I have not had a chance to Blog due to all the problems we have been having. The months of June, July and August are high maintance with sheep and goats. Even with pasture rotation, the parasites have been bad this year. It has been a chore just trying to keep the grass cut around the buildings. It grows about 5 inches in a week and we need to keep it cut to keep snakes away and control the parasites.
We have sold all our young Boers and Boer crosses at the sales. There is one here in Uniontown and another in Clantin. Clantin offered better prices. But it is always a gamble when one goes to the sale. One week it is good , the next it is not. I always seem to hit the sale when it is not...
The picture to the left is our garden. It does not look to impressive at the moment, but just wait a few weeks. We have 4 rows of sweet corn, tomatoes, beans, cucumbers and we have added much more and will have photos of that later. We were late at getting the garden in, due to problems breaking the ground and getting someone to help us by working up the plot. Now we are squared away and the garden is taking off.
Got to go feed some hungry bottle babies...