GOATS CAN SEE CLEARLY NOW

With birthing over, we have the spring in our step to revisit fundamentals on the farm, and our major project this May has been the milking process. The milking goats used to approach the milking parlor using a 90 degree turn, which they disliked. Goats are not at ease when they can't see ahead; despite using the same ramp every day they would have to be encouraged into the parlor by a second person each time. So, we have curved the ramp into the parlor so that the goats can see where they're going.

A clear path into the milking parlor

Now that the goats haven't been chivvied into the milking parlor, they are more relaxed and produce more milk. We move them through in small batches so that they don't push or nip in crowds. It's the same groups of friends each time, and the same ones to dash through first or dally behind. They have the time to finish their food in the parlor, so that we can be sure each goat gets 3lb of grain a day.

If this person with a camera would move, we would be happy to come into the parlor

The goat on her way to the loafing barn, the milk on its way to the dairy 

Milking is one of the fundamental jobs on the farm. It takes up to three hours twice a day, including setting up and cleaning the machine. Goats fed and milked peacefully, though, are happy goats, and their milk will be delicious.

 

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