Tag Archives: sawfish lamanchas

Nutmeg Classic 2024

Last weekend was our first goat show of the year and the only ADGA sanctioned show in CT. The Connecticut Dairy Goat Association 2-ring Nutmeg Classic is held in Somers, CT and we took 8 goats. Quinn and Amanda did all the clipping to get the goats ready. Since the temperatures in CT this time of year can still be rather cool in the evenings, we opted to only use a 1/2″ guard to leave a longer coat to avoid dealing with blankets for the goats. For showmanship, the judge commented that the longer coat impacted placing for both Quinn and Amanda. Maybe next year we will do a shorter clip for the May show. The judges were Todd Biddle in Ring 1 and Aprit Hitch in Ring 2.

Both Quinn and Amanda used new goats for showmanship this year. Amanda chose E.B. Farms Sunstone Tulsi and Quinn used Lucky 4-Leaf E Red Hot Chili. They clipped udders at the show on Saturday morning. Amanda placed 5th of 13 and Quinn was 2nd of 3.

For the breed classes, Chili is a recorded grade due to a DNA exclusion in her pedigree after we bought her. Unfortunately, there were not many Recorded Grade at the show, but she still won Sr. Champion, Best Recorded Grade, and Best Udder in both rings.

Tulsi was the only Lamancha milker we took. As a 2yo, 2nd freshener, she placed 8 of 9 in Ring 1 and 5 of 9 in Ring 2. While she isn’t as big as some of the others in our herd, her udder has great texture and capacity.

For the Junior Doe Show, we took 2 dry yearlings and 4 kids under 3 months old. Sawfish Kipu (recorded grade) is Chili’s daughter and was 2 of 2 in both rings. In the Lamancha under 3 month class there were 9 entries for both rings. Sawfish Chrysi was 2nd Ring 1, 1st Ring 2; Sawfish QS Bali was 6th Ring 1, 3rd Ring 2; and Sawfish Tahiti was 9th Ring 1, 4th Ring 2. For the yearlings, there were 11 entries in both rings. Sawfish QS Ferrari was 11th Ring 1, 6th Ring 2 and Sawfish AS Tesla was 3rd Ring 1, 5th Ring 2.

Overall, we had a good first show. In particular, we were very pleased with how Tesla looks in the ring and think she is going to continue to do better as she matures.

The Big E Goat Show 2023

Before we start, thank you to everyone who has checked in and sent well wishes, cards, baskets, etc since my (Rob’s) injury. I am recovering well, even if I do overdo it occasionally. My lung capacity is back to full strength and now its just a matter of letting the ribs finish healing. I have been hiking (5 miles this weekend) to restore some fitness.

September 29 – October 3, most of our herd of Lamanchas was at the Eastern States Exposition, aka The Big E. The Big E is essentially the New England Fair. Thursday through Saturday is all about the 4-H goat show and Sunday is an open goat show. Last year was Quinn’s first time attending the 4-H goat show and this year Amanda was old enough to attend as well. The animals move in on Thursday afternoon and the kids move their gear into the on-site (15 min away) dorms. Since Rob was recovering from the broken ribs, he camped in our travel trailer at the Big E instead of chaperoning 4-Hers in the dorm. Quinn and Amanda had 10 of our goats at the fair: 4 milkers, 2 dry yearlings, and 4 2023 kids. There were only 2 other lamanchas attending: 1 milker and 1 kid.

Thursday evening at 7pm, all the milkers get milked out as part of a milk test to see how much each doe produces in 24 hours; Thursday evening establishes the zero point for each doe. The goats are then milked again at 7am Friday and 7 pm Friday. The weight of the milk is recorded for the Friday milk outs and samples are sent off for testing. For milk outs, other 4-Hers jumped in to help get the does milked quickly. Sawfish Camellia (owned by Amanda) ended up winning the milking competition for Lamanchas producing 7.4lbs in 24hrs as a first freshener that kidded in February!

The kids have to be in the dorm at 10pm and get up at 5:30. After the Friday morning milk out, there were competitions for showmanship and fitting. Showmanship is all about how well the exhibitor has prepared. It includes handling ability, knowledge questions, and overall presentation. Fitting is all about preparation of the animal, mainly the clip job and hoof care. Showmanship and fitting competitions are conducted by age groups of the exhibitors and the breed of the animal doesn’t matter. These competitions took well into Friday afternoon.

The judge for the event was Julie Matthys, a well known Lamancha (and other breeds) breeder from Indiana under the herd Mint Leaf Lamanchas. She did a seminar with the youth on Friday afternoon covering topics such as nutrition and disease prevention. Friday evening the kids had to participate in a stations activity before the ice cream social. I think they made it back to the dorms at 10 on the nose.

Saturday morning was the breed competitions. This time, the judge was placing each class against others in the breed. Again, Quinn and Amanda recruited other CT 4-Her’s to help show since we had multiple animals in the same classes.

Around 3pm Saturday, the 4-H show ended and many of the animals departed. Later in the evening, another 200 or so goats started arriving for the Open Show on Sunday, which included a decent number of Lamanchas. Sunday was a standard ADGA show and Anna even entered the ring! Quinn and Amanda enjoyed talking with other breeders and learning details from more experienced herds.

Even though we didn’t have any huge wins in the classes, we were surprised to find out Quinn won Premier Exhibitor and Premier Breeder for Lamanchas! We assume this was based on total points and the fact that we had about half the Lamanchas in the show probably helped.

We wanted to get some nice setup/show photos of all the goats, but honestly it was so busy that things just didn’t work out. We did get a few.

We made it home at about 9:30pm on Sunday and the goats and everyone was exhausted. Breeding season is now in full swing as the does have been coming into heat. Late February to early March will be busy around the farm as we are breeding 8 does this year. At the end of long weekend, we actually came home with 1 more goat than we left with: Majenli LK Carolina joined our herd. This is doe is one that Rob fell in love with at the Big E in 2022 and when we found out she was available for sale, there was no discussion required. Carolina has already been bred to one of our bucks, Majenli LK Rip Wheeler.

Anna decided to add a goat to the herd in August. Her name is E.B Farms Sunstone Tulsi. She was a yearling milker this year. We have dried her off and she has been bred to E.B. Farms LL Regal for late Feb kids.

Kidding Season 2023 has begun

Sawfish Camellia started off our kidding season today with a super easy delivery of twin does. She was due yesterday and based on how big her udder got earlier this week, we actually expected her to deliver about 36-48 hours earlier. Amanda didn’t have school on Friday, so she set up a hammock in the barn Thursday night and did hourly checks on Camellia (Camellia is her goat). Unfortunately, the temperatures were in the 20s last night so she had to sleep inside.

Amanda sleeping in the barn on kid-watch

Throughout the day, we were checking on Camellia every hour. Around 1, Amanda came into the house and announced she saw discharge and kidding was imminent. She went back to the barn and called the house almost immediately to announce “there were feet “I see feet!” 15 mins later we had twin does at 7.1 and 7.2 lbs.

This year, we have shifted to all bottle babies. That means we are pulling the kids at birth and they are coming into the house for a few days before moving into a kid pen. We made this choice because the bottle babies are just always friendlier and easier to handle. It also means kids we are selling can leave earlier.

This year’s name theme is cars. The baby with a lot of white on her face is Sawfish AS Mercedes (barn name Merce) and the black and brown faced doe is Sawfish AS Porsche. The AS in their names is for Amanda Sawyer since they are in her herd.

This morning, Anna snapped a picture of Camellia’s udder while she was on the stand. Once Camellia kidded, we hand milked her for the colostrum for her babies. I honestly don’t think we have ever had a first freshener that was as easy to hand milk so fast after kidding. In the first 5 hours she has given us 2 quarts of colostrum and didn’t kick the milking bucket even once. Let’s hope that continues!

We have 2 more first fresheners due over the next two weeks. We will be retaining one of either Mercedes or Porsche and the other will be available for purchase.