I Milk A Goat!

Last year the Gems arrived as three-day old chicks in a box from Meyer Hatchery. I’d ordered all females. But by 5 weeks the Delaware looked suspiciously male.

It was clear a few weeks later that Opal was really Opie.

No one wants roosters. His days were numbered.

But,  Opie was one very lucky boy. My friends at Sweet Autumn farm actually needed a rooster for their flock. I visited him last week. He’s busy.

And occasionally loud.

Opie watches over his flock and never bothers the humans. That’s a perfect rooster.

But, I hadn’t gone to Sweet Autumn Farm just to visit with Opie. There were babies to see.

There are two Nigerian Dwarf Dairy Goat does at the farm. Both had kids this summer. These three were from one mama.

Compared to Pip and Caper, their goats were positively svelte and feminine! Here is a photo of Caper for comparison.

Yes, they are the same breed.

Where there are kids, there is milk. Leslie showed me how to squeeze just so. It took me many tries, but finally the milk squirted out!

That was a very patient goat.

I had a taste. It was as sweet as candy. Leslie was hoping that this experience would convert me from wethers to milking does. As much as I enjoyed the milk, and as lovely as her dainty goats were, I’ll stick with my easy to care for goat boys (and my all female flock of hens!)



    • Yes, he is. I think that the Delaware is a very nice breed. They’re docile and friendly. Despite the large size, perfect for small backyard spaces.

  1. I noticed a few things:

    1. Opie has very large spurs.
    2. Just from that photo you can tell the one hen directly behind him is one of his favorites.
    3. White leghorn on the wrong side of the fence. (reminds me of my place)
    4. Those babies are just plain “squeezable”

  2. Fun! Love goat’s milk to drink and in the soaps and lotions.

    • Nice to meet you Martha, you breed some very pretty goats. I was wondering since you are a breeder, and deal with stinky bucks ? Have you ever gotten around a buck that was so stinky in musk that you needed to wear a gas mask around them and a special suit so that the stink won’t get on you ? Because I guy I know online is breeding his Nubians for the first time, and borrowed a buck for the first time, and he is stinky enough that he is wearing a gas mask around him.

      • Aww Kit – Bucks really have gotten a bad rap ;) I just love my boys, they are loving and just want a little attention. I have (7) bucks and yes at times they do smell, but its only for a few weeks when they are in rut. Bucks will urinate on themselves (buck perfume) which is what makes the does sing when they are in heat. Its never gotten so bad that I’ve had to wear a gas mask – Its all apart of having a farm. :)
        P.S. Nice to meet you too!

  3. I was thinking back to the photo of when Opie went to his new digs. I seem to remember there were a couple of ducks chasing him? He looks so healthy! Thank you for sharing Terry!

  4. Gee Terry, that Opie turned out to be a magnificent boy. Thank you for the update. I actually wondered from time to time how he was getting along in his new home, and was very gratified that he didn’t end up in someone’s stewpot! Those Delawares are handsome birds: I think that Opal is the best looking of the gems! On the other hand, girls like Souxie and Tina look like they came out of a Dr. Seuss tale – I want to giggle every time I see them puttering about the hen yard!.

  5. Hi Terry et al. Just visited your site through a link on disapproving rabbits. What a treat! I shall be a regular visitor from now on. Love the web cams. I used to keep some RIRs in by back garden but a move to suburban New Zealand put a stop to my chicken keeping. Still, one day I hope to have a few hens again and it’s so interesting to see the different breeds and personalities.

    • Welcome, Diane! I have a number of viewers in New Zealand. I understand that you can even find my children’s book Tillie Lays an Egg, there. Friends of mine were recently in NZ and said it was stunningly beautiful.

  6. Oh my gosh! Opie looks great. Very glad he went to a good home when he left yours. Those kids and the doe are precious. I have never milked a cow or a goat so you’re one up on me. Still, Caper is a beautiful goat and I’d take him in a heartbeat. I’ve seen other photos of him [and Pip] which show his slender self.

  7. I am so happy to see that Opal has turned out to be a nice rooster, I have heard that Delware roosters can be quite nice even though they are big roosters. I hope his size will make harder to kill from predators and hawks and a better protector of his hens. I betcha even humans would think twice about getting close to his hens, even though he is a swetty. A good non human attacking rooster is rare, and even though he is quite large he might end up out living all the hens he grew up with at your place. Unless acourse he dies in protection of his hens, or if his owners need a new rooster so any chicks they raise won’t be too inbreed, other wise he is perfect. Since he is so large any of his sons would make some good eating, even if he never is eaten. And I hope he will continue to have a good long as well.
    The goats are just adorable, but I also know how much trouble they can be :)

  8. Opie is one handsome Dude!! The goats are beyond words they are so cute.

  9. I actually love having two roosters for all the hens. They take care of them, they have a loud chirp when they find food for them, the hens actually clean the faces and backends of the roosters, and they all run around together as a large group. I would miss not having roosters. Not sure what the bad aspect is of owning them except that they don’t lay eggs. Opie is a good looking guy!