Bird kidded on March 2nd, another beautiful Nose and Toes textbook delivery. Right down to perfect timing. Kids were born about an hour after morning milking. Birds delivery was so ordinary there is not much of a story to tell here! Just two beautiful black and tan doelings.
Kidding season is progressing along at a good clip. Most of the does have disregarded my calendar completely, kidding days before or after their "Due" dates. But all within the normal 10 day range.
Kenai kidded on March 1st, day 153. She had been fussing around most of the day before, but not being very serisous about it. I knew this was going to be an odd hour kidding. So, i left Joe on watch. I told him, "She will kid at 4am". And off to bed I went. He stayed up, he is normally a night owl. And i set my alarm for...4am. On barn check at 4, I found a freshly delivered very wet kid, with amniotic fluids still wrapped around him. I hopped in and started drying him off. Hoping there was another kid on the way. I know i said I'm not keeping any....but I REALLY did want a doe kid frim this breeding. There wasn't. Only one big buckling for Kenai, who...we had been sure had at least twins. She carries big...
Moira also kidded on the 1st. She waited until evening to present us with her single doeling. Another unassisted, unsupervised kidding. She kidded about an hour after milking time. Just before the next check. We check does frequently so we can catch any problems in time to assist. But there are times when does deliver so quickly, they only show us the minor signs of labor, and do not need an audience. That is okay. We check often, and observe doe for behavior at every check. Normally they will show you signs of progress. Sometimes they don't. In most cases does do not need assistance. They can deliver kids perfectly fine on their own. We do like to be there just in case. As an exmple, the breech kids from earlier in the week. They would have been difficult to deliver in that position. Leaving the doe to sort it out on her own could have been dangerous. With that said, we appreciate does that deliver kids with no fuss!
Catching up on kidding season updates. We left off with Dotty and her triplet does. On the same day, Shadow and Holly, our boer cross doe, also kidded.
Shadow's delivery at 6:30pm was a normal Nose and Toes delivery, with one exception, Shadow was not due until March 1st. Being a few days early is really no big deal, normal gestation can be anywhere from 145-155 days. We generally calculate "Due" dates as day 150. These kids were born on day 147. Perfectly reasonable. Only... Shadow had not been giving the usual signs of being ready to kid. She had a full udder, so we were keeping an eye on her but had not moved her into a kidding pen yet. I had walked out in the doe pen and notoced her proped against her Dam, Clone, and just starting to push. We moved h3r in and settled her down. And she got down to business. Delivering a spotted doe kid and a black and tan buck kid.
Throughout Shadow's delivery, Holly our boer doe had been very interested in the kids. Calling to them, and nesting in her own next door pen. Holly did a lot of nesting, but no stretching, no pushing, no positioning of kids. We watched her for hours. Waiting for the final step to begin. Finally. At 11pm. I intervened. Holly has a history of a previous kidding where she never pushed. And kids were delivered hours after they likely should have been. This labor like behavior had been going on for hours this day, and knowing her history, i gloved up just to check and see what was going on. I was greeted by a set of hooves and a little nose, just inside the birth canal. I was feeling around those hooves to see if i could get a grip. I managed to grasp the front hooves between the fingers of my hand. And just as I was about to apply gentle pressure....Holly walked away. She still never pushed, never hunched in response to her exam, but she did leave a baby behind in my hands! That kid came with very little effort on her part. I left her alone for 10 minutes or so while i dried the first kid, waiting for her to start laboring now that the first was out. Still, nothing. So I checked again. A second kid was presenting, Nose and Toes. And with a gentle amount of pressure, and still little effort from mom, another kid was born. The third kid, I discoved on further exam, was breech. Hocks first. I needed Joe to come out and hold her whileIi brought the legs around to a birthing position. After all that, 3 kids arrived, healthy, safe and sound. They are strapping kids, and already growibg well. 2 bucks and one spotted doe. Holly will be retiring this year.
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