Monday, May 25, 2015

One Morning's Milk

What you see here is three half-gallon jars. That's a lot of milk for one morning's chores and two goats! I adore my alpines and am so glad I went with full-sized goats when I got the dairy bug. There is no doubt that Nigerians and Pygmy goats are adorable and cost less to feed and house, but the way I see it - you're already commiting to care for goats so why not get the most return for your time? I'm all about the big girls and their high production of the good stuff! Do any of you have smaller goats? If so, what was your reasoning? I would like to know more about the advantages of smaller breeds.

A gallon and a half is just one part of the day's return. I can't drink that much and only turn a gallon at a time into chevre. So that leaves up to a gallon a day not used. Well, when the piglets come it goes towards their feed and so does the whey from cheese making. Some is frozen for soap making, another profitable item from goats. And lastly, the rest is given to friends and neighbors. My little 2-goat dairy supplies myself, the Wesner's and guests with healthy and fresh raw milk. There's an old saying in Africa that the best place to store extra food is in your friends' stomaches. I feel the same way!

21 Comments:

Blogger Erik said...

Jealous! So jealous! Do you freeze/store any for winter drinking? Also, what sort of lids do you use for those jars?

May 25, 2015 at 8:35 PM  
Blogger Ngo Family Farm said...

Love that African saying! My first milking goat was a Nigerian. Good producer for her size and great temperament. Milking an Alpine and a Nubian now, so I have a decent baseline for comparison. The main benefits of the Nigerians are the very high butterfat content of the milk (my 3 yr old can tell the difference between her milk and the Alpine's) and the ease of handling. My kids can handle the Nigerians without much trouble.
-Jaime

May 25, 2015 at 10:16 PM  
Blogger Jennifer Montero said...

I've been thinking of getting a pair of goats, not just for me but for my sheep. Orphan lambs and triplets need replacement milk which costs a FORTUNE. I could freeze leftover goat milk to feed these lambs. Goat milk is as good a substitute as replacement milk powder, cheaper and I could have chevre too! Maybe worth keeping a few bottles in your freezer too for lambing time?

May 26, 2015 at 5:34 AM  
Blogger Justine said...

I was thinking the same as Erik... Do you ever plan on freezing extra for drinking/culinary needs? Goats are in our five year plan and at first I was thinking Nigerians for the higher butterfat to make butter but having since talked to a few goat breeders the idea of having double the milk is almost too good to pass up and you can make butter with Alpine or nubian if you wait extra long or use a butter seperator (a few hundred dollars which sounds like a lot but if you dont have to buy cultured butter it pays for itself very quickly). Cant wait to have my hands on my very own milk goat! Good haul Jenna!

May 26, 2015 at 6:19 AM  
Blogger Jenna Woginrich said...

Sometimes I freeze milk, goats milk freezes well. Monday my ram was raised on Goatsmilk and I was glad to have dairy does on staff when I needed it. My goats weren't miking this lambing season and a small bag of milk replacer was 15 bucks!

May 26, 2015 at 9:04 AM  
Blogger Jenna Woginrich said...

NGO - do you feel the size of the goats makes up for less production? Easier to handle?

May 26, 2015 at 9:04 AM  
Blogger Kira said...

Jenna, you should consider making hard cheese with all that milk. You need 3-4 gallons per wheel. You'll use all that milk in no time and have goat milk cheddar, romano, feta, etc. for your efforts! I use an old fridge for the aging process. You can buy a cheese mold or two, a good recipe book, and improvise a press and you've got it - that's all you need! I have miniature Nubians because of the size, and their ears! Smaller goats are easier to handle, I can pick them up if I need to, but I still get plenty of milk for my small farm. The difference in production, if you get a good quality doe, isn't that dramatic but the space and feed needed is. Plus the mix of Dwarf Nigerian genetics into the mix results in awesome milk!

May 26, 2015 at 12:09 PM  
Blogger Kira said...

Jenna, you can also make goat milk soap with all that milk. Just freeze some of that milk in the amount you need for your soap recipe and pull it out when you need to make more soap. Goat milk soap is great!

May 26, 2015 at 12:10 PM  
Blogger Jenna Woginrich said...

Kira I have never met a miniature Nubian! My friends at Northern Spy farm have Nubians and they are big enough to but a saddle on! I would like to know if they are mix breeds? Their own smaller line? Just more info? I am curious!

I never made hard cheese, but it sounds tempting....

May 26, 2015 at 12:23 PM  
Blogger Jenna Woginrich said...

I do make soap! Just had a solar shower after my jog with cinnamon goatsmilk soap!

May 26, 2015 at 12:23 PM  
Blogger Ngo Family Farm said...

Not really, as my Alpine is also fairly easy to handle - I think maybe it depends more on temperament than breed? But, if time isn't an issue (ie you have to milk 2-3 Nigerians to get the same amount of milk as 1 Alpine) then I do think the high butterfat is worth it. I'm growing 3 human kids though, so high butterfat is important to me! But, time is also limited, so that's why I'm milking a Nubian this season - trying to get good production and high butterfat in one package.
-Jaime

May 26, 2015 at 1:12 PM  
Blogger Jenna Woginrich said...

I just cringe at milking those tiny teats with two fingers...

May 26, 2015 at 1:46 PM  
Blogger Kira said...

Jenna, Miniature Nubians originate from a cross between a full-size Nubian female and a Nigerian Dwarf male. They are awesome. With each successive generation the goal in breeding is to retain the Nubian features (pendulous ears and Roman nose) but in a small package (thanks to the ND genetics). When you get to the 6th generation, you have a full breed Mini Nubian. My Mini Nubian doe weighs only about 80 pounds when not pregnant. Another doe I had who was milking out of only one side of her udder gave me over 1/2 a gallon a day - imagine if both sides were producing milk! Check out these mini Nubians; Green Gables has great goats: http://www.greengablesmininubians.com/ and here's your district for the MDGA registry: http://www.miniaturedairygoats.net/District_4.htm

May 26, 2015 at 5:55 PM  
Blogger Kira said...

For hard cheese recipes
http://www.amazon.com/200-Easy-Homemade-Cheese-Recipes/dp/0778804658

May 26, 2015 at 5:56 PM  
Blogger Jenna Woginrich said...

Kira, thank you!!!

May 26, 2015 at 6:37 PM  
Blogger Jennifer Montero said...

Jenna - quick question re lambs & goat milk: Our lambs raised on replacement milk powder develop rumen problems and vit B absorption problems. Visual sign is a real pot-bellied appearance and slow to gain weight. Did Monday the ram show any of these symptoms raised on goat's milk? I'm hoping that goat's milk will prevent the rumen problems, even once-frozen goat milk. Interested in your observations / experience.

May 27, 2015 at 5:45 AM  
Blogger Goose Goose said...

Speaking of mornings....what do you feed your dogs? (dog food or meat from the freezer?)

May 30, 2015 at 12:07 PM  
Blogger Goose Goose said...

Speaking of mornings, I feed my dog in the am. What do you feed your dogs? (packaged dog food? Rabbits?)

May 30, 2015 at 12:08 PM  
Blogger Goose Goose said...

(*you can delete one of my questions, I didn't realize there would be a delay.) First time blog poster.

May 30, 2015 at 12:08 PM  
Blogger Maggie Heilmann said...

I too have Mini Nubians! They are the best. They eat way less than a full size goat, but have about 2/3 the milk production of a full size Nubian. They have high butter fat because of the Nubian & nigerian cross. They are no bigger than my Golden Retreiver. I have 4 does and 2 bucks. 9 kids running around right now. I'm keeping 2 more doelings, so I am getting a Perry milk machine to milk them all. I too drink, make cheese, soon make soap and feed extra to our pigs.

June 2, 2015 at 2:07 PM  
Blogger Maggie Heilmann said...

I too have Mini Nubians. They eat less than a full size dairy goat and give you 2/3 of the milk. They are no bigger than my Golden Retriever. My four does gave me 11 kids this year.

June 2, 2015 at 2:08 PM  

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