Second winter and more

Utah got hit with second winter. That’s not unusual, it often happens. What is unusual is that the storm came from the north with some pretty amazing ferocity. Look, snow and smashed grass.

 

Ok, so that’s only a light dusting of snow, but that’s some pretty pounded grass. Having the storm come in from the north was pretty significant. See, we moved some goats around (more on that in a second) and all of the little shelters they are using have open doorways facing north, because most storms come from the south or east. So this north storm came right on into the boy’s shelter and soaked and chilled them. So they had to come in to dry off.

Yup, two stinky boy goats soaking wet and shivering, inside the bathroom. It was stinky and messy and there was poop and pee everywhere, and we had to do this two days in a row. Gratefully it looks like second winter is done so all the goats can just stay outside.

So why did we move goats around? Good question! The goat’s owners want to isolate Una close to her due date so she can deliver in the barn away from the other goats. Moving her by herself required another space to be opened with a door and a buffer. No big deal, this is why I designed the field the way I did. I spend a few mornings digging out buried fence panels (actually Dave dug them out for me), putting in new posts, attaching panels to posts, and attempting to brain a door. Now , remember, I’m doing all of this with those goats around.

Goats are like three year olds. They see your bucket of wire fence ties and try to chew on the bucket. You open the fence and they walk through it, or my favorite, stick their head through the gate to try to eat something (when they’d be better off walking around!). I also had my hat chewed on every time I bent down. It was a little frustrating, but I managed to do it, and no goats ate any twine.

One other reason to move the goats around is to get some of the weeds eaten. People have this idea that goats just eat everything all the time, but it turns out that these girls are divas. They like to wander the field and eat a little of this and a nibble of that, and so their field is as tall as they are. On the other hand, the boys like to eat and have munched their field flat. So now the boys have more to eat and the girls have a little less. Wait a second, let me pull out my diagram and show you.

The girls were originally in the top left area, and the boys in the bottom right. Well, now the boys are in the top right area, Roca and Mimi are in the bottom right, and Una is in the bottom left. The girls have fence touching so Una doesn’t get lonely, but the boys have the buffer fence. There is an area about 4 ft wide but 32 ft long that is between the fences, and so Dave and the kids thought they should put it to good use. Dave stuck a ladder there so the kids could get in and play, but then the kids suggested a picnic table. Dad delivered.

This is a perfect view of how the buffer works. Boys on one side, girls on the other, no worry of unexpected breeding, with the added benefit of kid play area.

I’ve also been moving a few more chickens up to the goat area. Sometimes they stay, sometimes I find them back with the main flock in the morning. The best time to move chickens is after dark, and if you want to move a few at once, well, you throw them in a cage and put the cage in the wheely cart.

Both Una and Roca are looking huge.

And yes it’s true. I got a riding lawn mower.

We’ve gotten pretty overgrown, and I’m not as strong as I once was. It’s a crazy ride and I’m still figuring out how it works (found myself stranded out in the field, thought I overheated my engine, turns out I ran outta gas….) but I can get more mowing done faster.

Come back soon, we’ve got more fun stuff happening around here………

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