We know everyone is recovering from their turkey hangovers, so we thought this little video of the kids playing would be the perfect ending to the Thanksgiving holiday. We are very thankful this holiday season for everyone who has supported and encouraged us these last few months as we began writing this exciting new chapter in our lives.
This is a border tour of the south line from September, and yeah, we know we are that far behind on blogging. In the video, Mark touches on some of the specifics regarding the electric fencing configuration as well as future plans for the south line (meadowing). This video brings the south line up to date as far the September wrap-up.
We knew there were critters out there snooping around. We caught a critter on our trail camera back in September, but it was only an opossum. We never caught the baddies. The night our kids were born, Mark spent it on the property. About midnight he heard the eerie chatter of several packs of coyotes all around the area. One group was too close - right on the SW fence line. He was never able to spot them but we knew setting up the trail camera would help us pinpoint their movements and provide valuable intelligence that will aid in the upcoming meadow war.
The threat to our goats is real, and as we move forward with our growing herd we want to do our part to help protect them. As our herd grows with upcoming kidding seasons dealing aggressively with coyotes is necessary. A neighbor just up the road lost a mamma and baby alpaca this summer, and there are other stories of entire goat herds being wiped out in a single night.
These pictures were taken this week.
It's been awhile since we put up a video, and thought you might like to see our completed fence. This first video shows the completed east fence line.
October was a month of big changes for us. It was month of reality, learning, accepting, and growing. We started the month and ended the month on the south line. We cleared our first meadow, by hand, and Mark had it seeded with rye grass and clover by Halloween. Goal achieved and accomplished. Did I mention we did all of this by hand? Well, Mark did the majority of the work. I helped a little. The reason we did this by hand is because this is the way we want to cultivate our property. We want to maintain as much of the original integrity of the land as possible and by shaping it by hand without the use of heavy equipment, we are going to achieve this. It is also giving us both a bigger sense of accomplishment.
The biggest milestone of October was our transition from having property to a farm. We bought 6 goats from a farmer in High Springs, and brought them to live with us. We had high hopes and very high expectations that this transition would go smoothly. We learned very quickly that it would not. And looking back, we are now okay with that. We learned so much in a very long and very tiring week. One of the most valuable lessons we learned was that farm life will always throw challenges your way, it's how you react and adapt that determines your outcome. Within one week of bringing the goats to our farm, we went from 6 to 10. We wound up with one bottle baby, who is currently camping out at night in a box in our garage, and unfortunately, lost the little buckling on Halloween morning.
This week life around the farm has calmed down and we are getting into a good routine. The goats are starting to calm down and we have the littlest and most brave one eating out of our hand!
Stay tuned for November!!! Some really exciting things are happening!!!//tr
It's been a very long week. Hard to believe that things changed so rapidly on Monday for us on our little farm. In two weeks we went from 10 acres of land to a real, live farm. With that came problems, issues, and reality.
Since our last update, we went from a herd of 10 goats to a herd of 9. Sadly our little buckling from the second set of twins that were born early Tuesday morning died early Friday morning. While we are unsure of what happened, some research has led us to believe that it might have been floppy kid syndrome. In a nutshell, this is extreme muscular weakness or paralysis in very, very young kid goats. The cure can be quite simple by removing the kid from drinking milk and giving electrolytes and sodium bicarbonate. We thought we had a kid that was having trouble getting used to his new legs.
It's very frustrating to know that we could have saved this little guy, but you have to shake it off and move forward. You learn. You live. You have 9 other members of your herd that need care. Life must go on.
This little doeling is surviving and doing well. She goes to "kid"ergarten every day and hangs out with the herd and plays with the other kids. At night she sleeps in a box in our garage. It's very weird to have this little thing attached to us as her mom. She follows us wherever we go and is growing stronger every day.
We are also learning about herd hierarchy. The mamma of the other set of twins has placed herself as the queen. She rules the group with her horns and her mouth. She's quick to nudge a nosey kid and smack another goat in the ribs so that she can get something to eat. She's very curious and very beautiful. Her daughter is going to ascend to royalty as well.
We'll be back in a day or so with the October wrap up and some more detailed posts about our herd and the other progress we are making on the farm.//tr
In 2014 a couple of 40-somethings decided to make a change. The purchase of 10 raw, pine scrub acres along Florida's Nature Coast started it all. This is that story.