By Scott “Goat Guy” Bice
Kidding season is now in full swing at Redwood Hill Farm.
Our kids are frolicking around the pens enjoying the glorious Sonoma county spring weather. I love this time of year, as it gets me back more into the barns, tending to the births. Instead of rushing off to some meeting or errand, I spend a lot of more time just “being” with the herd. Often, it is here when I find myself reflecting on all the wonderful times spent with these special four legged friends, our beautiful herd of dairy goats.
The other day, one of our top Alpine show goats named Tango was kidding (giving birth). I sat there with her and began to think of how special this family of Alpine dairy goats is. I remember traveling to Spokane Washington in 2005, where Tango’s grandmother, Jambalaya, was named the Alpine National Champion at the American Dairy Goat Association’s National Show.
What a special day that was for Jennifer and the whole Redwood Hill Farm team! Jambalaya has always been one of my favorites and not because of all her success in the show ring (she was also the 2007 National Champion), but because of her sweet, easy going disposition. When she was in milk, she would NOT get off the milking platform until she was allowed a chance to rub her head on you. And she was good too! You could turn around and get a really good back massage and let her work out the knots. Jambalaya is retired from milking now, but she is still good for a rub if you visit out in the pasture or in the barn.
Tango is starting to bear down and push now. As I’m kneeling in front of her, I feel a push myself from behind. It’s Tango’s mother, Jitterbug, almost knocking me over! Yes, Jitterbug is like her own mother, Jambalaya, loves to give out massages.
Tango proceeds to birth a lovely doe kid who is a cou blanc color pattern just like her. Second, she has a handsome buck kid.
Her boy will eventually make his home in Canada, hopefully throwing the traits his wonderful family is known for. Then Tango has a third kid, a beautiful doe kid as black as midnight on a moonless night. I’m excited for Tango and her upcoming show season. She is one of our best and has already won her age class at a National Show. Now she is in her prime and will be milking well, having triplets. My thoughts transition from the past to the future now as I look at the newborn kids and I think, what great experiences will these new friends bring?
Well first off they need a good “dancing” name. Feel free to email me any of your ideas!