Introducing The Goats
Goats at Hostile Valley Farm are finally becoming a reality! Our little ones were born two weeks ago now, and will be coming home to us at the end of June. I thought I'd take a moment to introduce our readers to these bundles of joy, so they are familiar with them as they become part of our daily life.
Our goats are coming from Sunflower Farm, which is down the coast in Cumberland, Maine. I've been a fan of their creamery since first watching the "Running of the Goats" video on youtube in 2014, but it was a few years before we had the space to add goats to our own farm. In those years I visited the momma goats and took a few cheese classes at Sunflower Farm. From the happiness of their herd, and the farm's "No Cull" philosophy, it quickly became clear to me that this was the place I wanted to get our goats from.
Along with their "No Cull" philosophy, Sunflower Farm also makes sure to allow their baby goats a full eight weeks with their mothers before they starting milking full time, which translates into a herd of contented kids every year.
In addition to cheese classes and their delicious creamery cheeses, Sunflower Farm sells their kids to eager farmers each Spring. Their goats are so popular, they usually have a waiting list even for the neutered male goats which they sell as farm companions and pets. After patiently waiting for over a year, we were lucky enough to be able to choose our goat kids this April.
We had decided to get two does and a wether (neutered male). The female goats we will breed and milk, and the male would be a nice companion animal to add to the farm. When a set of triplets was born at the farm, two girls and a boy, we knew they were the ones!
Our goat kids are sired by Rosasharn Welk, who provides excellent milking bloodlines, and their mother is Happy Go Lucky (Gogo), a great milker with a calm personality. Our triplets will be named Sweet Pea, Tater, and Mr. Jones (after the late David Bowie). You might recognize their baby pictures, because the images of "goats in sweaters" quickly went viral! Every year, Sunflower Farm takes some stunning pictures of their goats, and this year our little threesome was especially adorable in hand-knit sweaters that the farm got from a fan.
Mr. Jones, image credit Sunflower Farm
Since the farm hosts visiting hours on weekends and during school vacation week, these little goats are also very used to being picked up and cuddled every day, and are completely docile. At the moment, they are smaller than our barn cat and the perfect size for snuggling. Since they are Nigerian Dwarf goats, they'll never get much bigger than a medium sized dog, and will produce sweet milk with a high butter-fat content.
These three were some of the first goats born at the farm, which has twenty-seven babies now and more to come! We are very happy with our choice, and can't wait for these adorable kids to come home.