Just when I thought I was going to reclaim my greenhouse from Rocky, our hand raised kid goat, and plant out some summer vegetables along came Sprout! I’m not sure what is going on with our nanny goats this year but of the 4 kids born, two have been abandoned by their mothers. In the long run I think it will be good for Rocky to have company in the field from a half sister who also has no mother, but right now I have a kitchen being invaded with bottles and goats at every turn!
When sprout was born her mother looked quite surprised and confused by what she had produced. Farmer Nick spotted her early one morning and wiped down the slimy little bundle that was still covered in newborn mucus. He placed baby and mother in their own field shelter together in the hope they would come together. Sprout when placed near Mum would nuzzle round instinctively looking for milk but Mum simply walked away as though there was something wrong with her baby or it didn’t belong to her.
We left them together in the field shelter as it was a warm sunny day during the morning feed run to see if they would bond but there was no joy and baby was beginning to shiver despite the sun. There was nothing for it but to bring baby inside with us even though we were convinced both mother and baby looked healthy. We could see Mum was in milk so we thought we would have a go at expressing from Mum to give her new born the best possible start. Farmer Nick had a knack of flipping Mum over and managing to milk her single handed, for the rest of us it was a two person job, one to raise her onto her back kegs and keep her still and the other to milk her. It was a bit of an effort trekking out to the filed shelter 4 times a day but we managed to keep it going for a full week.
Sprout was named by those following my Facebook Page
She was as good as gold moving between her expressed milk and formula. It was a real novel experience for our guests staying to watch and help milk a goat and then feed the resulting bottle to little Sprout; we had no shortage of volunteers.
She looks so small next to Rocky who is now 6 weeks old but has all the same markings and funny little skipping play actions. I am trying to introduce them to one another so Rocky who is now in the field by day and night will look out for his little sister in time. I have to admit it is a fun way to spend the day and my children are only too happy to help!
For now my summer greenhouse has just the remains of the herbs as first Rocky and now Sprout have nibbled away in there but I hope I will soon be able to plant it out. At this rate it may be winter sprouts I’m planting!
If you are hoping to visit the farm this summer and meet Rocky and Sprout we still have availability up till week commencing the 4th July after which we are full until 29th August.
“Tales from the farmers wife” shares the funny and interesting happenings on our lovely holiday farm with Farmer Nick and our 6 children. A behind the scenes look on balancing family, farming, the holiday business and cooking for all.
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