The Walden Effect: Farming, simple living, permaculture, and invention.

Learning Edgar

Daffodils with goats

Edgar is quickly finding his niche on our farm. He still drops his belly down when I try to pet him...but Aurora says that's not a bug; it's a feature. After all, she could stand for hours and let me brush her, especially at this time of year when she's shedding her winter fluff. Why do I need another pettable goat on the premises exactly?

Double-decker manger

Elsewhere, our new wether is proving to be equally adaptable. For the first week or so, I gave him fresh hay on top of his safe spot --- the dog kennel where he eats breakfast far from Aurora's overeager head butts. But then I realized the imperfect hay that tends to build up in the bottom of our manger was disappearing for the first time ever.

Sure enough, a little sleuthing turned up what was going on. Unlike Aurora, Edgar isn't so spoiled he considers only a tenth of the hay worth eating. That means he's basically a net plus in the feed department since he saves me from having to clean out the bottom of the manger. Score!

Goats barking a tree

Out in the pasture, Edgar is teaching Aurora some good habits --- like actually, you know, eating in the pasture rather than just waiting for their daily out-of-pasture graze. On the other hand, our new goat is a serious bark eater, so I'll have to keep a close eye on him if I ever decide to tether him near fruit trees.

Companion goats

As a side note, a couple of you have commented on his size --- pretty darn puny compared to our doeling who is his exact same age. "Will he get any bigger?" you ask. I'd say he will since he grew slowly with pretty much no access to concentrates and without the extreme milk bar Aurora enjoyed. That said, he is a pure Dwarf Nigerian rather than sharing Aurora's 1/4 Nubian blood, so I'd expect him to always trail behind her in bulk.

Dwarf Nigerian wether

Edgar's other interesting trait is --- he's a nibbler! Hold out your fingers and they end up in his mouth. I guess that's better than running away when I get close, right?

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About us: Anna Hess and Mark Hamilton spent over a decade living self-sufficiently in the mountains of Virginia before moving north to start over from scratch in the foothills of Ohio. They've experimented with permaculture, no-till gardening, trailersteading, home-based microbusinesses and much more, writing about their adventures in both blogs and books.

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When do you plan to add another goat or two?
Comment by Gerry Mon Mar 6 11:02:56 2017
Edgar is cute. Interesting how he has his own way of doing things too.
Comment by Chris Mon Mar 6 20:53:22 2017
Edgar is a very cute little goat!!
Comment by Jayne Mon Mar 6 22:13:24 2017

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