Tuesday, September 28, 2010

The Wait for Fall Continues...

The short break in the weather is over and we went back to HOT.  Saturday we had some rain and now we are cooled off and it is beautiful.  I love this fall, low humidity weather.  It is in the 80s during the day and down to 55 at night, which is a bit chilly for us.  We need more rain and am gearing up for October shearing.  I am going to shear Icelandic sheep and lambs and the shetland lambs.  Already have 4 done. 

 One of our icelandic lambs is pictured to the left.  The Icelandics are sheared in the fall and the spring.  The fall fleece is the best fleece.  We make the spring fleece into felting sheets.
 Duncan, our shetland ram is pictured to the right and his fleece will be sheared next spring.  He is in his breeding pen with his ewes.  We had to cut his horns because they were pushing into his face.  He is much happier and doing great with them removed.  We tried to keep as much as we could to keep him comfortable and  him still be handsome.

We have worked the Icelandic Sheep and removed the CIDR inserts.  We put the rams out as planned.  Did not see anyone in heat, so we are not sure if it worked or not.  The Icelandics are secretive and shy with their honey mooning, so we will not know if they worked until next spring.

The Trump is pictured above and really has a nice fleece this year.

Our herd of goats are gearing up for October kidding.  Blue kidded Sept. 18th with triplets.  The bucks are For Sale and the doe is reserved.  Blue is pictured to the right with her daughter AnnaLynn who is very pregnant.  She is sired by Buddy and is bred to Mr General.

The triplets pictured to the left are Blue's kids sired by Oldesouth Black Panther.  The bucks in the fore ground are for sale.

I think the two Boer does (Hestia & Sally) will kid soon as well,  my guess is the end of October, first part of November.  Sweet Caroline and  Blue's Daughter "AnnaLynn" are bagging up too.  Thundersnow is starting to bag up (that means they are getting milk in their udders).  Butter's daughter is just beginning to bag.  UDiamond looks pregnant, but not bagging yet.  This doe has been giving me heartburn for some time, waiting for kids and dying to see what her udder will look like.  UDiamond is a Diva and struts around like a rock star.  I keep asking her when she is going to have some kids and she just parades off like a queen...

Mr Paul has cut more hay and we have round baled this cutting for the cows, horses and pastured sheep for winter.  We will plant rye grass on these pastures for winter grazing.  We want to disc up a pasture and reseed with coastal and winter wheat.  As usual, the weather has not been in favor for winter pasture.  It is ether to wet or to dry.

We need to run electric and water to the new barn.  We will trench to the barn and put both water and power lines into the same trench.  With the days getting shorter, we will need lighting shortly.

Have been pricing and looking at different milking machines for the goats.  I hope to milk 10 to 15 goats this fall and winter.  We have not decided on which one yet, but will let everyone know once we freshen several does.  Milking the small goats by hand is very difficult.  I have been breeding for larger teats and have some who are easy to milk, but the first fresheners are still pretty small.  Ariel, my Nubian is a breeze to milk with her large teats.  She will be milked by hand.  She is due to freshen in November.  We will be doing more one day milk tests and still trying to figure out the DHI.  There are several ways of doing the DHI and it is confusing.

Enough for now...