June 30, 2009

Feed Pen Chaos



Life with goats is interesting. Some times are more "interesting" than others and one of those times is feed time. Let me assure you that no matter how they may act in this video, the goats are not starving. They are all well fed and all of them have 24/7 access to good pasture and hay, but they are not waiting on hay. This is their grain feed pen and grain is like candy to goats. It is a little bit like holding a bag of chocolate bars in a school yard full of unruly children. Only these children have horns. So for safety's sake I am actually kneeling down behind a cattle panel with the camera up so the fence doesn't show.

Speaking of safety I don't like the way they crowd the gate but we have not figured out a better and more safe way to feed a whole herd of goats their grain yet. We don't feed a lot of grain but I do like to use some so I can do a head count and check everyone out each day. I used to take the grain bucket out in the pasture with the goats and dump it in pans when we had half this many and that doesn't work out so well, actually it was kind of insane. The sweetest and fattest goat in the herd would just as soon trample you than miss one kernel of grain. I always reminded myself if I fell to remember to throw the feed can AWAY from my body, curl into a fetal position and hope the herd didn't think I was holding out with extra grain in my pockets. haha! (hope you know I am joking)

A few people have told me their goats are so well behaved they will line up at their designated feed pan and wait patiently to be fed. FIBBERS! They just have to be because otherwise I somehow own the most grain piggy goats in Kansas. There is no patience or designated feed pans on our farm. After the gate is open everybody grunts, growls and runs around playing "musical feed pans" until all the grain is gone because they are convinced each pan of grain must surely be better than the one they already have. Once the chaos of feed time is over my pack of single minded grain piggies turn back into the gentle, sweet and affectionate goats that they are. Some grain time chaos is just part of owning goats.

Of course feeding time when it is muddy is a whole other experience! Click here to find out why proper footwear is important on a goat farm and why I hate mud.

*Thanks to my husband for help in making this farm video.

18 comments:

KathyB. said...

Ha ha! That is similar to me opening the sheep pen gate and entering with a wheelbarrow full of hay, a real stampede ! Even similar to putting a fresh from the oven pizza out for a group of young men..just step aside and make sure there is plenty of food!

Jason said...

We play musical feed pans here too. I can't figure it out, I now have six feed pans for 7 goats but they all fight over 1 or 2... Well, the dog bogarts one of them almost everytime; can't figure that out either...

Christy said...

Mine aren't any better behavied than yours. I've also heard people say their goats will stand on the milkstand to be milked with no grain. My goat is done milking when the food is gone. I better hope I am too LOL.

Alix said...

Stampeding goats!!! Gosh but they're cute. Even when they are weaving and pushing and shoving! Kind of reminds me of how the Italians are in Italy. Heheheh.

Cori said...

I only have six goats and I know exactly what you mean about feeding time.

I can't imagine a whole herd, and it is every goat for themselves because they all think another goat is getting better food.

Mom L said...

Your goats are so funny! My one cat acts like she's going to starve if she doesn't get me out of bed at the proper hour to feed her - she'll jump on me, sit behind my head and pat it or my face with her paw (sometimes she's gentle and keeps her claws in), and I'm sure she would use horns if she had them!

Nancy in Atlanta

Kathie @ my net finds said...

WOW, you weren't kidding! hahaha. I love the dog, so pretty!

Moonshadow said...

I've heard lots of stories about goats over the years, the funniest one from a friend who had just been given his mother's vintage cadilac. He was in a band and the band drove to southeastern Kansas to jam with some other people they had met. When they got to the location the found themselves in the middle of acerage with a trailerhouse in the middle, various junked cars and goats. At one point in the jam session the friend looked up to see a goat standing on the roof of his vintage caddy. My friend was NOT a happy camper. :)

Pricilla said...

I refer to the grain as crack for goats. Mine know EXACTLY when it is time to go into the barn and if I am one minute late they start to bellow. Loudly.

Then the race begins to get to their pens. Woe to me if I am slow in walking up to the barn.

Joanna@BooneDocksWilcox said...

Mine behave the same way. My oldest ones are also the heaviest and can bulldoze the lightweights out of the way.

We had been using some sweet feed but now we just use the pellets. Mike said he thought they liked the pellets better and the sweet feed would rot faster anyway.

Mine get plenty of pasture time too.

DebH said...

I know EXACTLY what you are talking about...all Chaos it seems when they notice you even coming close to the pen at designated times. Also, they have feed 24/7 and still act like they are totally addicted to the Goat Chow!! They even know when I throw in a bit of crack corn and sweet feed with calf creep mix...eeewww...and wait ever so not patiently for me to hand over the good stuff. They do love their Goat Chow!!! So glad to hear someone else has noticed the "starving" actions of those Greedy girls X)

Carolyn said...

Scary funny! I get trampled by my two girls and their kids! I can't imagine having that many...wait. I can imagine it and it is wonderful!

Happy feeding time.

Mary said...

Fibbers!!! I sputtered when I read that. HILARIOUS!!!

At times, the dairy girls do come to the door in order. But generally it is not so pleasant.

Goats are pigs. LOL. Why do they always run to the last morsel? *mart, yet senseless.

Sometimes you cannot even medicate one without a mob. I have stuck myself with a few needles. :)

Eszter said...

At us this situation. mainly, if dry bread is got!! :)

lisa said...

i watched that video like 3 times yesterday and then showed my husband and now I have watched it here. Its just too funny for words.

Lisa

Twisted Fencepost said...

What a stampede! You'd think they were starving. tee hee
No goats here but....
My horses play musical feed bowls too. One of them is the mare in charge. No one can eat until she gets her food and if she decides she wants someone elses, they move. All she does is put her ears back and walk toward them. They don't hesitate to get out of her way. Drives me nuts.

Wrensong Farm said...

Oh, I KNOW they aren't starving. I think it's just harder to train a group of animals to respect your space. :) My sheep are the same way when it comes to anything besides hay. (even hay pellets!).

DayPhoto said...

Misty's goats are growing and doing well. They love to come to Grammy's every evening on a little goat walk, where they get....COOKIES!!!!!!

This was a cute post!

Linda
http://coloradofarmlife.wordpress.com