Monday, September 16, 2013

Goats like to kid around!


The last couple of weeks have been quite active at Savera Farm's 'goat-osphere'! A few weeks ago, over a span of 2 days, we were glad to welcome 3 deliveries resulting in 4 kids. All the kids were around 3-4 kgs and the delivery process was fairly smooth. Fairly smooth, since we were largely uninvolved - which is not necessarily a good thing. Over time, we would like to better develop our processes to predict and better manage deliveries. With that said, Tellacherry kids unlike Kanni are lactating well which is a huge relief since we had to manually nurture and feed the earlier Kanni kids for several weeks.

A day after the birth, the kids were on their feet and a few days later, they were strong and confident enough to hop around the cell. For several weeks after birth the does and kids will remain separated from the main herd.
Some kids have to be guided initially before they identify with their mothers.

While other kids get to business right away. Feeding time!
Post delivery, kids need to be cleaned and inspected
Our first set of twins, hoping for several more!

In an hour or two, the newborns start to settle down and the does can become quite protective

Here are a couple of key metrics we found helpful :

Parameters
Range
Notes
Temperature
102.5 - 104
Depends on ambient temperature
Pulse rate
70 - 80
Beats per minute
Respiration
15 to 30
Per minute
Stomach movements
1 - 1.5
Per minute
Puberty
7 weeks - 8 months
Separate bucks from does at 2 month
Stomach movements
1 - 1.5
Per minute
Estrus/Heat Cycle
17 to 23
Days
Gestation
143 to 155
Days
Life span :


Does
11-12 years
Often death in does is kidding related
Bucks
8-10 years

Productive kidding
8-10 years
For Does
Full growth size
At 30-33 months
Most keep growing until year 3

With the kiddings steadily becoming the norm at Savera Farms, our foray into goat rearing is steadily moving to the next level. While we are encouraged the flock is increasing, it also comes with added awareness and responsibility. As we acquire experience and develop the needed skills, we constantly work with more experienced operations for advice and best practices. At the moment, we are trying to understand how larger herd operators manage simultaneous kidding of 200-250 does. Feel free to share your advice and readings.

4 comments:

  1. I am really impressed by the systematic way each & every thing is Managed here. I am sure this is what each and every Indian Farmer should learn and follow. Of course Uninterrupted Funding is a main hurdle in many projects if it is planned with borrowed funding in India. The most important part of it is Budgeting / Implementing / variance analysis.I am sure you must be doing all these things at SAVERA. Knowing about these records and record keeping systems will be a great learning for the farming community. Thank you very much for making all these things available to the farmers/learners.

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  2. Farming to a system is a big challenge. But I could see patience and dedication could make it possible. The transformation you had achieved is commendable. As for as feed we are trying with an alternative cost economical cereal based cooked feed, Recipe of it you could check from your neighbours in village. Though I could not yet find any reference about this feed I could visually see the change in our animals for the past three months.Though some are advocating against it I do not find any sustainable alternative to bring down my feed cost.

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  3. Are you doing hydroponic fodder for your goats ..... there seems to be a simple method to grow it ...... in farnnest website by showvik on november 21, 2012 .....
    I know a person doing this but dont know what his costs and efforts are .

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    1. We are not doing hydroponics fodder yet. There are couple of players who mfg these machines. The process is pretty straight forward with 'ready to eat' fodder in 7-8 days. We may consider this as our herd grows since growing quality fodder during summers can be challenging.

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