Karen Lee Mack wrote:
Kathleen Sanderson wrote:Yeah, needing to own a bull or use AI (or rent a bull from our neighbor, which would be all black Angus around here) is another reason I've stuck with goats. That, and they don't drink nearly as much water. Bucks can be nasty when they are in rut, but that depends to a large extent on breed. The seasonal breeders (Alpine breeds) are the worst; breeds like Nubians, Nigerian Dwarfs, and their crosses aren't nearly as difficult to be around. They are still nasty, though, LOL! One way to manage that is to buy a buck kid every summer, so it will be a few months old when you are ready to breed (I don't like having kids born in the middle of the winter, so prefer late fall/early winter breeding). Use your buck for two or three months, and sell him. A young buck won't be nearly as objectionable as a mature one. You just have to keep quality in mind when you are buying your buck kids; don't settle for a buck who isn't going to improve any doe kids you decide to keep.
If I had enough land to keep several head of cattle, I'd get Dexters. A bull is a bull is a bull, but a Dexter bull would be much, much safer to handle than a Jersey bull. And AI is a pain, for the reasons you've mentioned. Though once you've moved, you may find that services are more readily available than where you are now.
Both services, and cattle, should be more readily available. We would like another full Jersey for ourselves but then I plan to breed them to Dexters, lowline (not sure of the whole name) or possibly even Angus if small enough. She stands 44" at her hip. In looking at AI, I discovered that midsize Jerseys like mine are basically a by product of breeding for miniature size. We almost bought a 3/4 Jersey, 1/4 Dexter but she wasn't much less expensive and, oh my, that Jersey face got us. But I think the offspring would then be good for meat or make a fine family milk cow if quantity was not an issue.
That is a great idea re the male goat. That is part of my concern. If I were going to do that, I'd hope to pick a breed that would suit me but also be popular locally.
Karen Lee Mack wrote:I am still using dairy as part of my carnivore lifestyle.
Having a Jersey cow in milk is a resource I am unwilling to squander!
One day I may experiment with a no dairy month or something.
It may have me shed a few more pounds that need to go. Right now,
I think I am still doing a lot of healing at 5 months in.
My current diet is hamburger, eggs, raw dairy including butter, homemade ricotta,
some storebought cheese, kippers and incidental other seafood or steak.
And still, a little honey.
Denise Cares wrote:Kathleen, Thank You! That's the best explanation I've ever read about how to ready potatoes for planting. I've had the slips break off the eyes many times like you say they're loosely attached. I have cut the eyes off and left them to dry but I think it will be too long to expect them to store for several months. I'll have to donate several whole potatoes to the effort and if they sprout during winter hopefully not too much to keep them from going bad or rotting before spring.
Gaurī Rasp wrote:Thanks for adding to the discussion Kathleen!
Last year was so hot & dry I definitely had a problem w storage. Some sprouted quickly.
Unfortunately we live in a flood plane & I can’t dig a root cellar. Storage will be my challenge this year!