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The wild bunch

The head goats

Mainly mucking about today. Visited with the goats. Around 15 of ’em. These girls upfront are the current kingpins of the goat yard. Goats have their pecking order (just like the chickens to come!), which mainly means a few get first crack at food, or crowding at the fence, or whatever else they all want to do, while the rest back away and wait or get butted. It’s mostly rank by size, but a vicious streak counts, too. The one in the middle is on top now (with her friend on the right), the brown pair on the left (the Evil Twins), used to be a vicious tag team running the yard, but they lost their edge. Not that they’re always fighting, a brief burst of deterrent action goes a long way. It’s like a soap opera if you watch ’em every day. Goats…

Every year, this little period in the first half of March is kinda like waiting for the starting gun. I’m full of energy and waiting on the weather. A little EDGY. All the early starts are now under lights: onions (first time from seed), celery (another first), more leek and parsley, plus the stuff started around the end of January (leek, parsley, rosemary, arugula, lettuce). It’s another week to the peppers and eggplant, and then the grow racks will start to get full, and I’m also holding off till then to transplant the early lettuce to the greenhouse. As soon as the snow clears and the temperature warms up a bit, there’s outdoor fix-it work, starting with an old ice fishing hut to turn into a home for the composting toilet (an outhouse for the field!) and the chickenhouse to renovate. There’s a list. Plus a lot of garden clean-up, crops left over winter, that should be pulled as soon as I can. MEANWHILE, I’m waiting…

More goats…



  1. I can definitely relate to being a little edgy for the start of spring. I always get that way right about now. Add to that the fact that we’re harboring “fugitive” chickens in our house pending our city counsels approval of an ordinance modification to allow us to keep them. Sort of a gamble but I feel confident that it will pass. Maybe after we get this passed, I’ll start working on goats:)

  2. ruralapsirations: Well, the farm is about 55 acres, so there’s a bit of space. There are two big fields, about 10 acres each, and the market garden is 2.5 acres floating in one of those. Then there’s a lot of woods, another 30 acres or so, and then the area around the house and barn. I explained about the goats (and cows, and donkey) in The hay around us… I read some of your blog. I love being able to see everyone’s gardens getting started all over the place, all on slightly different schedules! You may be interested in this interview, about small farming and heading (back) to the country, I just read it a couple of days and I’m still in that enthusiastic tell-everybody-about-it mode: the plowboy interview: Wendell Berry. :)

    P~: I don’t know how I’ll react when regulations threaten to directly encroach on something I”m already doing, or want to do that seems reasonable. So far, there have been no head-on collisions, but I wonder how five years of tiny farming may have changed me…and something like that might let me find out. I wish you and your chickens well!!

  3. Robin

    The goats look great. I like leaving horns on. They’re not always convenient but they are useful.

  4. I love goats. We have 4 pygmy goats with one fixing to have some kids. I don’t know when but she looks like she is about to bust. Hopefully in the next month or so I will be getting about 20 Spanish goats for our place. Yours are beautiful.

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