Please help advise on herd genetics

Discussion in 'Mini Mania' started by nigerianmeadows, Feb 13, 2011.

  1. nigerianmeadows

    nigerianmeadows New Member

    42
    Dec 12, 2010
    North Carolina
    Okay, I need a little advice. I am considering selling most of my herd to get better udder genetics. I have to move slow as I don't have a ton of money sitting around, but I want to add some really good milk and udder genetics. I am looking at Little Tots Estate, SM3 Pines, I like Ceasars Villa and Rosasharn lines. I already have some Ceasars Villa that I am keeping , and have a lot of Stonewalls Raising Arizona and CBS Stetson in the background in my herd. I really need help figuring out what doe I should buy. Milk is an absolute, I would love to purchase an adult as well as a kid since we really need to not have dry times for my children's sake. It will be a bit of a stretch to pay a lot, but I would really like to produce better animals than I can with some of what I have. My website address is listed below if you have time and want to see what I am working with. Ultimately, out of the does, Ammi and her offspring will be long-term keepers, but the rest will be sold over time. I am also hopefully getting a buck from Little Tots Estate Fawn and LTE Buckeye this summer. Thanks for any advice you can give me.
     
  2. RunAround

    RunAround New Member

    Feb 17, 2008
    Massachusetts
    My advice... don't just look at lines. Yes, lines are nice but they aren't everything. I've seen lots of goats with great lines with horrible udders.

    When you are buying ask for pictures, pictures, pictures! I wont buy a goat without pictures of it's udder, or dam's udder. If it is a buck there MUST be pictures of both it's Sire's dam and Dams udder. :)
     

  3. StaceyRosado

    StaceyRosado Administrator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Oct 4, 2007
    NJ
    Also ask about how the lines mature - are they slower at maturing or can you expect high producing in a first and second freshener or will it take up to 5 years for peak production?

    I just bought a doe and I've been told her lines take longer and she won't ever really be a high producer but her background has MCH all over it so you have to ask about the specific goat too.
     
  4. liz

    liz Well-Known Member

    Oct 5, 2007
    Shelocta PA

    I TOTALLY agree....names on paper are just that...it's seeing how those "names" turn out that are important.
    Udder pics are GREAT as well as even having unofficial barn records as far as milk production, I unfortunately don't have an udder pic of my bucks dam, his breeder never got one, but the milk records I keep are ones I can back up with pics of udders :wink:
     
  5. nigerianmeadows

    nigerianmeadows New Member

    42
    Dec 12, 2010
    North Carolina
    Thanks. I think I don't know enough yet, grrr! I see so few milk records when I look online, everything is about form that I don't completely understand yet. I am trying, looking at information from the goat groups like ADGA, AGS, NDGA, here... Still, I'm trying to piece it together. I didn't understand the term "buttersoft udder" until I chanced upon a doe for sale that had one! I was so surprised at how she felt, but I just didn't know. Everyone talks about the lines, and linebreeding, but I don't really understand how they all go together and how to determine if the goat might be what I want. Everything I think I knew yesterday has changed, and what I think I know today will probably be tossed in the trash in a year or two. It just gets frustrating. Then, I always wonder if I can sell the offspring! I have people who want kids from a doe and buck I have, yet her udder isn't that perfect and the buck is untried. It's such a gamble based on paper, when all I want is a goat that will give me milk for more than a few years without her udder getting damaged. :GAAH:
     
  6. liz

    liz Well-Known Member

    Oct 5, 2007
    Shelocta PA
    It's definately a gamble when it comes to breeding.... someone who has the opportunity to kid out a proven doe, retain her kids, and have them bred to see just how they are improved over the dam would be an awesome person to have close by, I personally have seen a few Nigerians with "big" names in the lines and really haven't been impressed, they were good looking goats but not the "perfect" goat.
    I see many does that belong to members here that I would love to have, quite a few have lines that I've never heard of before...I have my senior doe out of Dawn Acres and Brush Creek, my Jr doe out of Creekside and HOG...My buck out of Tarla and BrickKilnHill....breeders, other than Brush Creek, that I've not seen many goats from BUT IMO....maybe biased, the 3 ND I do have are really nice looking goats AND my senior doe is on her 5th freshening with an udder thats far better than some of the well known lines, and has proved very capacious and has held up very well....my FF has such a "buttery soft" texture and nicely formed udder that I'm anxious for her kids to be old enough to separate so I can milk her! Her dam is a pleasure to milk and her daughter is improved over her. Even well known lines have goats that just don't turn out the way the breeder expected,. it happens to anyone that breeds.

    The genetics behing my 3 are loaded with Goodwood, GayMor, Piddlin Acres,Stonewall and if it wasn't for those beginnings, my goats would likely be very different....instead of selling off your herd, take a good look at each one , critique their form as well as udders on the does you freshen... keep in mind the faults of each and what you would need to improve those faults with their kids. I personally prefer the elegant and dairy looking Nigies, length of leg as well as body and easily milked, up there and durable udders. Think of what you like to see in a nigi while keeping the breed specifics in mind, all it may take for you to get there is 1 or 2 different bucks.
     
  7. nigerianmeadows

    nigerianmeadows New Member

    42
    Dec 12, 2010
    North Carolina
    Thanks Liz. I probably worry too much, but there is so much baby talk and genetics running around right now, lol! I guess even with imperfect udders, if they produce for a while and I try using good bucks maybe it's not too bad. I don't want to breed just anything, rather to improve on any goat I'm breeding. That and I'm desperate for milk, lol! Maybe I am jumping the gun, so to speak. What you guys say makes sense. I am open to any advice on breeding though! I want to learn, and learn, and learn. Someday, it may be knowing how to breed for certain traits will mean my children have good food in their bodies and we have something to trade if times get tough. Thank you guys for taking the time to respond to my worries.
     
  8. liz

    liz Well-Known Member

    Oct 5, 2007
    Shelocta PA
    No problem!
    Improving the breed itself can only be done "so far" without completely changing the breed standards. Improving on certain desirable traits is always a plus....if you have does that you have been milking, and you can see as well as feel the difference in the udders, then you'll know what it is that you want.
    Also, for a longer lactation where you aren't in a "dry" period, a doe is trained by how long you milk her...if you milk 2 x a day for 4 months then go to 1x a day for 2 months , she will lose production and start to dry off...If you milk 2 x a day for 8 months after her 2 month old kids are weaned, you'll have milk for 3 months into her next pregnancy, she'll "learn" to be in milk that long. The 2 months she has to rest befor the next delivery, you could stagger breedings so that you have a doe or 2 freshen around the time the "milker" is bred....continuous supply of fresh milk for your growing 2 legged kids.
     
  9. nigerianmeadows

    nigerianmeadows New Member

    42
    Dec 12, 2010
    North Carolina
    Ok, so I actually need to milk my first fresheners for a long time then? I haven't been sure how to "develop" their udders. THe babies are being sold as bottle kids at around 2 weeks, but I wasn't sure how to milk them for later production. I didn't realize they would "train" themselves to keep producing like that! Guess I just learned one of my mistakes last year, sigh... In any case, your suggestion might be just what I need since most of my does are babies right now. Thanks!

    Rear attachment and a weak MSL seem to be my main udder woes. Cinnamon's teats are almost sticking straight out to her sides and hit her legs badly when she walks. That and her udder is sagging to her knees. Her kids have the same poor attachment, but one has a better msl. I bought a buckling that from what I can tell has good rear attachment in his dam and sires dam, so I was hoping I could get some improvement in the future. My other big producer has a weak rear attachment too, but otherwise I love her udder! She is CornerStone Farm STS Ammi, and her kids with strong bucks have looked good. I have a lot of hope for the doeling I kept from her. Anyway, guess we will see what I can do and learn in the next few years! :wink: