Friday, January 30, 2015

Winter Update Part 2

The short of it is, I've reduced my herd, or two herds, really, down so far that I'm very low on breeding possibilities.  I retained only two ND does and one ND buck, and two mini-Nubian does and one mini-Nubian buck.
When I decided to sell both of my Nubian does, I hadn't researched the process of creating a line of mini-Nubians to the fullest yet.  I'm still getting a handle on that process, and realizing that it would take a lot of time and a lot of good goats to develop my own line from scratch.  Yes, I can breed my does and buck for 50/50, second generation mini-Nubians.  Yes, they will be some really nice, mini sized goats, and they should be rather milky with nice udders and teats.  But they won't have any more breed character than my current mini-Nubians.  I need more Nubian in the line first.
I'm also not ready to leave the Nigerians behind.  I love the little darlings who give so much in terms of loving personality, rich and creamy milk, and even some meat for our table.  All on so little space and so little food!  I can't fault them for much, unless it is their short stature and smaller teat size.  It is hard to get a pail under them.
Right now I have a loose plan for moving ahead.  I would like to keep the Nigerians that I have until they grow old and pass away; at least the does.  I will be breeding the mini-Nubians I have now for milking, and selling the doelings they produce.  I expect them to be quality, and worth investing in. They just won't have the roman nose and floppy ears of the Nubian.  At most I suppose they'll have airplane ears and straight noses, like their mothers and father.  I hope in a while to get a 5th or 6th generation mini-Nubian buck who has great breed character, and breed him to my current does, and perhaps a daughter or two.  It will be years down the road when I can say I am producing doelings with the character I'm hoping for.
This has all been a huge learning experience, and I'm not sure that with the relatively small resources I have as far as land and $, that I've made a "wise" decision as far as breeding mini-Nubians.
However, I think I have made a wise decision about the goats I've kept for my homestead.  These first generation mini-Nubians of mine are feeling like a perfect fit here.  They're just what we need.  Great size, great personality, don't seem to eat any more than the ND's so far.  I'm really pretty sure their udder and teat size is going to be really nice for hand milking, and they are tall enough to get a bucket under with ease.  I'm really looking forward to freshening them, and I don't think I'm going to be disappointed.
All that said, I still don't know exactly where I'm headed in the future, but I like where I am right now.

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