Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Skippy's twins

As I said in Sunday night's post, the most logical time for anyone to give birth would be Monday because I had an out-of-town meeting. So, of course, that's when Skippy decided to kid. When Katherine did morning chores, she told us that Skippy's tail ligaments were quite soft, so Mike went out and put her in a clean kidding pen. I left for my meeting, assuming everything was under control. I mentioned that he and Jonathan should check on Skippy every couple of hours even though they had a baby monitor in the barn. Fast forward to my arrival home at 5:00.

"Skippy kidded!" someone said when I walked in.

"When?" I asked.

"We don't know. She has two kids, but she never made any noise over the monitor. It's a buck and a doe."

Turns out the monitor was on the wrong channel, but luckily, Skippy, who is only a yearling, is a great mom. Both kids were cleaned up and nursing when they were discovered. And it was still unseasonably warm, even though temperatures were in the 50s, so there was no problem with hypothermia because they were in the barn, out of the wind.

Doeling with elf ears
The buck has erect ears like a Nigerian. Skippy is a first generation mini mancha. Her dam is a la mancha, and her sire is a Nigerian. I'm one of those people who thinks the no-ear thing is cute, but I like smaller goats, which is why I'm experimenting with mini manchas. Anyway, first generation minis have one gene for erect ears and one gene for gopher ears, so they wind up with elf ears, which are extremely short ears. When two first generations are bred, you wind up with 25% gopher ears (almost nothing), 50% elf ears (really short ones), and 25% erect ears like a Nigerian or Swiss goat. The doeling has elf ears.

It's really funny that the kids are the same color as mom because that rarely happens with Nigerians or la manchas. Mom and her two kids would look like a perfect set of matched goats except for the erect ears on the buckling! Unfortunately for him, those ears mean he'll be castrated and sold as a pet.


MamaTea said...

Aw...well how nice of her to take care of everything herself while you were away. ;) Good job, Skippy!

Nancy K. said...

That's the way I always like my ewes to lamb ~ when I'm not even aware that they are in labor! It saves me SO much worrying.

I figured Skippy was ready to kid by how sunken in her sides were (kids had dropped into birth canal) in the last post. I'm happy everything turned out so well.

Now for that POOR PIG!


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