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  • Kendra S.

Record-Keeping - 2020 Doeling Weights

I tried to keep track of weights on all the doelings in 2020. This first set of numbers is from August 16, 2020.

This if formatted Age in Days - ๐‚๐ฎ๐ซ๐ซ๐ž๐ง๐ญ ๐–๐ž๐ข๐ ๐ก๐ญ - Birth Weight - Weight Gained - Daily Gain

Daily Gain is rounded to the nearest hundredth.


Kinders:

Velvet - 228 - ๐Ÿ’๐Ÿ— - 3.47 - 45.53 - .2 Caroline - 165 - ๐Ÿ’๐Ÿ— - 5 - 44 - .27 Cheyenne - 131 - ๐Ÿ๐Ÿ— - 4.2 - 24.8 - .19 Liza Jane - 144 - ๐Ÿ๐Ÿ• - 3 - 24 - .17 Jillian - 212 - ๐Ÿ’๐Ÿ‘ - 4.6 - 38.4 - .18

The Mutts: Strawberry - 136 - ๐Ÿ’๐Ÿ–.๐Ÿ” - 7? - 41.6 - .31 Boer X Dairy X Kinder. Single, dam-raised.

Sherry - 204 - ๐Ÿ“๐Ÿ—.๐Ÿ” - 4 - 55.6 - .27 Boer X Nubian X Kinder. Triplet, dam-raised.

Maria - 204 - ๐Ÿ”๐Ÿ - 4.8 - 56.2 - .28 Boer X Nubian X Kinder. Triplet, dam-raised.

Billie Jean - 204 - ๐Ÿ”๐Ÿ - 6 - 56 - .27 Boer X Nubian X Kinder. Triplet, dam-raised.

Havana - 109 - ๐Ÿ๐Ÿ• - 4? - 23 - .21 Kinder X Kinder X Nigerian. Twin, dam-raised. Unweaned.

Rita - 109 - ๐Ÿ‘๐ŸŽ - 4? - 26 - .24 Kinder X Kinder X Nigerian. Twin, dam-raised. Unweaned.


LaMancha and Miniature LaMancha: Layla - 137 - ๐Ÿ”๐Ÿ‘ - 8? - 55 - .4 Miniature LaMancha. Single, dam-raised.

Baby - 178 - ๐Ÿ”๐Ÿ‘ - 8? - 55 - .3 Standard LaMancha. Twin. bottle-raised. I weighed the smallest set again on September 19, 2020. This was 34 days from the August weight, so just out of curiosity, I figured how much they'd gained in just that fuzz over a month. This is formatted Current weight - Gain Havana - 29.2 - 2.2

Rita - 32.6 - 2.6

Liza Jane - 29.8 - 2.8

Cheyenne - 33.2 - 4.2 Weights as of December 4, 2020 Some notes - I sold Maria, Havana, and Rita. Caroline lost quite a bit of weight dealing with oak toxicity in October and has just now gained back to what she was in September. Baby got taller and had a slight battle with oak toxicity as well - she and Caroline have both been separated from the others and were gradually reintroduced to grain - they are now up to over half a pound each and have been introduced to alfalfa this week to help them gain and get in good condition again - they're both a 2.5BCS.


What I think is interesting is this illustrates what I expect to see this time of year - a slump in daily gains as the pasture decreases, even though these doelings now have hay 24/7 and are now getting much more grain every day than they were back in the summer.

This if formatted Age in Days - ๐‚๐ฎ๐ซ๐ซ๐ž๐ง๐ญ ๐–๐ž๐ข๐ ๐ก๐ญ - Birth Weight - Weight Gained - Daily Gain

Daily Gain is rounded to the nearest hundredth. Today's weights were rounded to the nearest pound. Kinders:

Velvet - 339 - 55 - 3.47 - 51.53 - .15 Caroline - 276 - 51 - 5 - 46 - .17 Cheyenne - 242 - 39 - 4.2 - 34.8 - .14 Liza Jane - 255 - 36 - 3 - 33 - .13

Jillian - 323 - 50 - 4.6 - 45.4 - .14


Mutts:

Strawberry - 247 - 61 - 7? - .22

Sherry - 335 - 67 - 4 - 63 - .19

Billie Jean - 335 - 75 - 6 - 69 - .21


LaMancha and Miniature LaMancha:

Layla - 246 - 69 - 8? - 61 - .25

Baby - 289 - 59 - 8? - 51 - .18


Why keep weight records?

Plenty of reasons! I want to know what kind of birthweights I can expect of my bucks. Obviously, some of these were not weighed or were not born here so I have no birthbweights. Despite my best intentions, life got busy so some kids were weighed when they were a bit older than newborns so their birthweights were estimated. Of course, litter size, parent size, generation, and percentage (such as the LaMancha percentage in Miniature LaManchas) should also be taken into consideration. In the photo below, for example, there is a twin, two week old ML buckling that is about 60% LaMancha. His sire consistently throws kids 7lbs or heavier. The newborn buckling was the smallest Kinder kid I've had, a twin that weighed 2.4lb - about half the size of an average Kinder kid.


Miniature LaMancha Buckling and tiny Kinder buckling

Daily gains are interesting to me because it gives a more complete picture. Yes, a kid might be bigger than another kid but is it actually gaining better? You don't know that without doing some math. This also helps me set goals. I can see what lines gain better. I can see what my average is and decide what I want to improve that average to! I could further break this down average daily gain into age brackets, dam-raised or bottle-fed, breeds etc...


With Kinders, weight tracking is also a good tool for seeing if your herd does hit that ideal of quick growth rate by growing to 70% of their adult weight by a year or younger. For example, a yearling doe with an estimated adult body weight of 110lb should weigh 77lb by a year old. I doubt these Kinder girls will be hitting that 70% mark - that's okay - more goals. But. I personally think adult body weight can be exceptionally tricky to guess, especially in both the Kinders and Miniature LaManchas because of the high variability of parent size in those lower generations. Most sources and folks point to not breeding a doeling until she is at least 65% of her estimated adult weight. Some folks and sources point to as large as 80%. Just a small side note here - I do NOT go off weight alone when deciding to breed - I look at age, pelvic structure, body capacity, maturity, and the birthweights of kids from the buck in question. I honestly have more of a minimum breeding weight than a percentage. I do not expect huge gains after weaning nor in general, like some breeders. I believe most animals will have months where they gain a lot, months where they don't, especially in forage-based systems. I don't expect huge gains primarily because: 1. I do not feed what I consider a lot of grain. It is generally high protein though - 18%. 2. I do not feed alfalfa often, usually only to milkers and sometimes doelings. This particular group only got a bite here and there. 3. They forage over acres of exceptionally rough, steep terrain. I mean rocky, brushy, trip-you-up just trying to walk through it type of rough. Then add in serious slopes!

4. I strongly believe no hay and grain regimen that I can/will/do implement here will beat 24/7 good pasture and forage.

What I do look at now is how the smallest of each breed I have compares to the largest. Because they're being raised under the same conditions. That means some goats are performing better than others in the same environment. As mentioned earlier, I do take into account litter size and parent size, too.



It will take time to get them to gain and grow like I want in the conditions I have. I already see improvement, but gains could be better or at least more uniform, especially among the Kinders. I do think it is important to note I am working with quite a few lines and generations in the Kinders. Ideally, I would take out that bottom third or so of doelings from each breed every year. The ones that aren't performing as well as their herdmates. Maybe I will do that eventually, but right now I am still building my herd - hard to be so picky when I had so few registered doelings this year! Do you keep any weight records in your herd? For more posts on this and other records like deworming, check out my farm page on Facebook under the tag #heftygoathollerfarmrecords.

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