Thursday, August 26, 2010


I tried to take some photos of the pups today, but none of them seemed to be in the photogenic mood. They are now around 9 weeks old. They have been eating out of the dog feeder along with Jael. I gave them their shots last week and they were wormed as well. Hopefully I'll be able to get some individual photo of them soon.

I did have to share this one... Look at those puppy dog eyes!!!

Monday, August 23, 2010

Coccidia, toxic plants, and did I mention Coccidia?

It has been a battle with coccidiosis around here for what seems like forever! It started out with a few of our bucklings, and spread throughout the whole herd of bucklings. We decided to treat them and move them into the field with our other bucks, and wouldn't you know coccidia decided to show its ugly face again. We have been drenching them individually if they have the symptoms....runny runny runny diarrhea. We did fecals on those that had stool firm enough to run the sample, and it was overwhelming how many of those coccidia oocysts were seen in some of the samples. Shane called every feed store from here to Timbucktoo to see if they carried the rumensin blocks made by Sweetlix. NO ONE had any! He finally talked with a woman at a nearby feed store and she said she could order them, but they would have to be made and shipped to the warehouse, then deliver to her store when the representative came by. At this point, we were ready for anything...Two LOOOOOOOOOOONNNNNNGGGGG weeks later, they arrived.

Shane had put them out in an old tub with no cover, but of course the goats had to jump on top of the blocks.....So they are now stuffed into one of our homeade mineral feeders with a rubber flap on top for protection from the hooves. I hope it works at preventing us from having this issue again. Shane has about come to the conclusion, that the coccidia may have come from our pond. Wherever it came from, we DO NOT want to see it again!!
On another note, we have our does in a new pasture with an "unsecure" fence on the backside that joins the National Forrest. They began slipping through the fence and nibbling on all of that wonderful browse. We then began to notice a few does with the scours. First though was OH NO, coccidiosis! Then we came to realize that the does were eating a plant that has been told to us is toxic to goats. We now have a strand of hot wire on that side to keep them exclusively in the pasture. No more roaming around the forrest! Since then, no scours! A local goat farmer pointed out the plant to Shane and told him that it would make the goats sick; and called it purple mint. Their parents must have forgotten to mention to them about not eating this plant, because I would catch them out and most always this plant was being attacked. Here are some pictures of the "purple mint"

***UPDATE*** (2012) a reader has informed me that this plant is called beauty berry.  Click here for more information on beauty berry.

Here is a picture of another plant growing around here that is supposedly toxic to goats. It grows some sort of fruit looking thing on it. They are everywhere on one side of our property. I was told that these trees were used to produce some kind of chemical, but I have honestly went blank on what it was! The goats aren't interested one bit in this plant though.

***UPDATE (2012) *** The photos below are of a "tung oil tree" Click here for an interesting article on the history of tung oil.

This is Sweetie Pie (Mallory named her) She is one of the most curious goats we have. She will come up and check us out so closely, but if we try to reach our hand out to pet her she runs. Mallory is the only one who can pet her, so Mallory thinks this goat belongs to her.

I tried again to get another shot of the new guy on the block. I think his name is going to be Gold Digger. He was too interested in the goats on the other side of the gate to pose for any pictures. We will be ready for the bucks to be put in with the does in the middle of September for hopefully a later kidding than last year. But as you can see by his coloring he and all of the fellas are ready to go right now.

Sunday, August 22, 2010


Any ideas on how to get the smell of stinky bucks in rut off of your hands??? I've read that you can use lemon or lime and that didn't seem to do the trick.

Even washed my hands with good ole' soap and water and still have that stinky smell. Just wondering if anyone out there has any good recommendations.....

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Good-bye donkeys

Shane has just decided to sell the donkeys. We first started out with donkeys to be guardians to our cattle before we goats. It was kind of a learning experience. Our first donkey came from the local sale barn for $20 ( you get what you pay for!) He seemed to be ok to begin with, but we had a cow that had a calf one day and he decided he was going to get his teeth on him and get rid of him. That was such a scary day for me, Shane wasn't home and all I could think was that this poor confused newborn calf is about to get killed because of that crazy donkey! We were told stories about them killing calves, so Shane had prepared me with instructions to shoot him with the 12 gauge if I caught him doing it. ( I really never thought I would have to ) So there I am, telling the kids to stay in our yard, grab the shot gun and run (yes I know, very dangerous; I didn't want the donkey to get the calf OK?) When I finally got a clear shot of him without hitting any other animal around, I pulled the trigger. Not really thinking about what distance I was from him. ( He made me run and get out of breath and I was MAD!! ) I ended up shooting him in the back end with bird shot about 6-8 feet away...Needless to say, he stopped and quit chasing that calf. I don't think he knew what hit him! We led him to the catch pen and shut him up for the night. The next day, he had to go....

We learned our lesson, just because donkeys are great guardians, doesn't mean that they all are. We ended up purchasing these 2 from a man in Ovett, MS. He had around 10 jacks and jennies with his herd of cows. Since we have owned them, we haven't had a loss to any predators. (before the donkeys came along, we lost 3 calves to coyotes the year before) It is getting difficult to keep them seperate from the cows when we want the cows to graze along with the goats at different times. It is deeply ingrained in donekys to hate dogs, so we can't have them out there with our LGD's. I wouldn't want them getting used to dogs anyway.... We just have no choice, but to let them go.

Jenny with her colt she had this year.

Jack, father of the colt above

I just love baby donkeys, they are so fluffy!

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

what's happening

I've been waiting to get some time to make some posts on this blog and my family blog, but it seems as though that isn't going to happen. Soooo here it is, midnight and I am going to get this post finished and go. to. bed.

Jael and her pups trying to stay cool under the pecan tree out in the pasture.

Xena cooling off in what is left of our stream running through one of the pastures.

Now for the good stuff........We have ended up purchasing 18 %kiko does and doelings. Some are 1/2 and up to 3/4. Mr. Sonny told Shane he was getting out of the goat business, that he was just getting to old to keep up with cutting hay and having to come in every afternoon to check on the goats. Shane jumped at the opportunity to get some of his does. They are very nice goats, and it is good to know and trust the owner too.
Here they are meeting our does for the first time. Those poor girls don't stand a chance though without their horns. They have been disbubbed and will be on the lower end of the goat heirarchy around here because of that. Mr. Sonny said he despised getting a goats head out of a fence, so he fixes the problem before they begin.

The same day we purchased the does, we originally were making a trip to Petal to a commercial producers home to purchase his Purebred kiko herdsire. Mr. Shows called Shane about an ad in the market bulletin.....and here we are.....the VERY PROUD owners of this amazing buck. A friend of Shane's came over to see him and ended up helping him get this buck on our livestock scales. He weighed 220 lbs. I have been trying very hard to get a good photo of him, but he will not be still long enough for it to be halfway clear. All of the bucks and bucklings are in a field together, so the introduction of new testosterone has caused things to be very antsy in that field. No one is just standing around long enough for me to get a picture. So here is the best I can get for now. I can't wait any longer to share this with you guys.. I promise to get a better photo of him along with the other bucks hopefully very soon.

Here's the story on this buck. The guy who owned him had never trimmed his hooves since he owned him. He has had him for several years, and had some of his daughters out in the pasture with him. I can't even put into words how impressed I was with his daughters. Come to find out that he had started with some boers and this buck has been breeding everything out there for years. Basically his daughters out there with him have been linebred. And boy did they look AWESOME. The only way I could describe them is that I told Shane they looked like steers running around out there. They were so meaty. He also had told Shane that the herd he has now is what has survived. He gives no special treatment, shelter, or grain. Survival of the fittest seemed to be his motto. On the way up his drive to his house, there his goats were in a torrential rainstorm like nothing was going on. Now that was the first sign to myself that these were some kind of goats. We will be putting him in with all of our purebred does as well as the % does coming up the first of Sept. I am very excited to see what he will produce.
OK....Gone to bed now....Good night......