Introducing…

Foxy Brown.

foxybrown

and

ginger

Ginger.

Not original or poetic, but you know, they are goats. I’m keeping Foxy, and Ginger will be for sale in a few months. They come from champion Nigerian Dwarf milking stock.

A few people have inquired about the boy, Eeyore.

futurewether

I hope to borrow my friend’s tool, the Emasculator, and make Eeyore a wether, fatten him on grain and milk for a few months and then have him star in an animal processing class I’m putting together with the talented primitive skills teacher Tamara Wilder. (The date is set: September 13, if you’d like to sign up for the class. We’ll be killing two rabbits and one goat, processing all their parts, and starting the process for fur-on hide tanning. We may have a guest appearance of a local chef for a how-to cook lean meat demonstration. The class will cost $100 and is limited to 10 people. Send me an email if you want to sign up: novellacarpenter at gmail)

As for  his hermaphroditic sis/bro, Hedwig, here in this photo you can see the extra part (what I’m calling the angry millimeter) on her vagina.

hedwigsangrymilimeter

Hedwig  is really sweet and fun, like a puppy. She/he doesn’t try to hump everyone like Eeyore (I know, already!) and she’s very people-focused. But on a practical note, intersex goats are not useful: they can’t be mated, they don’t make milk, they can’t stud, but they may smell strongly, like male goats. So, it’s a quandry. If I give her away to someone then I lose money on stud fees and feed, and perhaps that person gets a goat with problems. So, if anyone has a suggestion, let me know what you think.

Despite these issues, I’m having tons of fun with the little ones. I take naps out in the goat area and have them scamper across my body. Orla sometimes sleeps on top of me, and Bebe keeps a safe distance except when she wants a quick neck scratch. In the mornings, I milk Bebe and am in the middle of training Orla to behave on the stanchion. Things are lovely and I’m looking forward to a great, goat-filled summer. Let me know if you’d like to come by for a visit.

13 responses to “Introducing…

  1. Alright, I suspect this must be a stupid question, but… If you’re going to slate one of the animals for slaughter/consumption, why not make it Hedwig? Sounds like there aren’t many other good options for him/her.

  2. I didn’t even know that could happen. Although, I suppose I should have…

  3. Are you quite sure about the kind of intersex condition Hedwig has? I don’t know about the variety of intersex conditions goats are prone to, but by analogy from humans, there could be a chance that ze would be able to give milk.

    But maybe I’m just over identifying.

  4. Just ran across your blog via the SFGate article. Now I know how I’m blowing one of my evenings this weekend. Very entertaining to read.

    As for Hedwig, if giving zir away is a likely option anyway, it seems like petting zoo/education organization might have a place for such a donation. http://www.cetafoundation.com/ comes to mind. Since they’re doing educational ourtreach, the smelly, oddly put together, little goatling might fit them perfectly. They also are likely to have a wide range of critter contacts.

    And finally, August travel means not getting to take $100 classes in September, sadly. But I’ll keep watching in the event that you do similar events in the future.

  5. Pingback: Martha My Dear « Once There Were Lions

  6. I would SO love to visit and see the panda bunnies and goats!

    Lynetta

  7. Why are you going to emasculate Eyeore? Hedwig would seem a better candidate for the plans you have for Eyeore.

    If you plan to fatten and kill a goat for its meat, why not choose the one you can’t impregnate, send out to stud, or milk (Hedwig) and let Eyeore live? He could be a stud goat.

  8. While I’m an urban vegetable farmer, I have little experience with livestock farming. But, since you’re in a quandary about what to do with Hedwig, why not fatten and sacrifice Hedwig for meat, and save Eyeore for stud? I hope you’ll let Eyeore live.

  9. I’ve been a vegetarian for about 20 years and this blog post is the first time i’ve ever really wanted to go ‘yeah! this person gets it!’. I don’t know that i’ll ever start eating meat again, but when I first became vegetarian it was for animal welfare and environmental reasons, I always maintained if I raised and killed the animal myself i’d have no problem eating it. Now i’ve gone without for so long I don’t feel any need or desire to eat meat, but if I were in the area (or same country even) I might well be tempted to come along and join one of your classes. I don’t know if any of that makes sense, but i’m pleased to have discovered you (via the Sew Green blog) and hope your little farm continues to thrive.

  10. Were both parents of this kid polled (horneless)by any chance? You greatly increase the chances of a hemaphrodite with breeding polled to polled. It is not that common otherwise but you would not want to repeat that breeding in any case.
    I would think the best choice for this kid would be as a meat animal as hemis often have other health issues as well.
    As far as your little buckling – he is cute but if he isn’t really buck quality in your estimation keeping him as a breeding buck is not a great idea. Breed the best – cut (wether) the rest…..

  11. Here’s a suggestion… a business idea I’ve had for a while. How about a mobile goat lawnmowing/weed clearning service? I’ve seen postings on Craigs List of homeowners seeking to borrow goats for this purpose. Maybe you could put your little hermaphrodite to work!

  12. i used to have a hermaphroditic goat named annie and he/she was a sweet goat and i don’t think hedwig should be slaughtered cause they actually make good pets…………….also annie was a nigerian dwarf too maybe its more common in that species

  13. duly noted evan, thank you.

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