We’ve now been milking Sedona for 7 months. For the first couple of months, she was the only one we were milking and she gave a good deal more milk, about 50-75% more than the Ghetto Goats individually had when we were milking them. In all fairness, Daisy was a first freshener* and Bella was a second freshener, while Sedona is a third freshener. Even though she is only ahead of Bella by one freshening, it was clear that she was a better producer than the Ghetto Goats. That’s to be expected though since Sedona is a Nigerian Dwarf, a dairy breed, and the Ghetto Goats are, well, not a dairy breed. I usually just call the Ghetto Goats “Old World Pygmies” because they don’t look at all like the breed standard. They’re just not cobby (though Bella could fool you this year with her super fluffy winter coat) like pedigreed/registered pygmy goats.
We’ll be breeding Bella again soon. She’ll then be a third freshener so we can see how well she does compared to Sedona. I’m also interested in seeing how long Sedona will produce. The Ghetto Goats went strong for 15 months until we decided to dry them off because we bred them again (Bella didn’t settle though). Surprisingly Bella still had enough milk left when Panda was just a few days old that we could use her to feed Panda when Daisy was suffering from milk fever and didn’t have enough milk to feed her.
The real difference though is in the milk. While Sedona’s milk is OK, it’s a bit bland compared to the Ghetto Goats’ milk. I would almost say the flavor is flat comparatively It also turns goaty before the Ghetto Goat milk does. The Ghetto Goat milk is much richer and sweeter than Sedona’s milk because it has a higher fat content. The cream rises in the Ghetto Goat milk after just a day. For those of you that milk goats you know what a big deal that can be since goat milk is naturally homogenized and the general rule of thumb is not to expect much cream. For those that don’t milk, it’s one of the reasons it’s so difficult to find goat butter.
Milk stand attitude goes to Sedona. She calmly stands still and lets me adjust her legs while milking. Daisy, on the other hand, likes to get pissy on the milk stand. She likes to hold her legs together blocking me from reaching her teats, and sometimes, if I try to move her legs she’ll throw a little kick my way. Her other preferred milking stance is the squat, hoping I can’t reach her teats. She really likes to do this when it’s time to dip her teats after milking. Fortunately she stopped laying down. In addition, Daisy has to also wear a special collar made from a 1 gallon plant pot to keep her from self-sucking (more on that later). Bella, is less of an issue with the milking but isn’t as calm as Sedona and she does have a tendency to throw the occasional temper tantrum.
The process of milking, other than attitude, has to go to the Ghetto Goats. They have super-sized teats which makes for less hand cramping and faster milking – a good thing with uncooperative goats. Sedona has small teats (though large orifices) so it takes longer to milk her. In addition, because of their size, I’m the only one that can milk her since Tom’s hands are too large. Sedona also has a tendency to hold back a lot of milk.
Milk Wars Score Card
- Quantity: Sedona
- Lactation Length: No Clear Winner Yet
- Quality: The Ghetto Goats
- Attitude: Sedona
- Ease of Milking: The Ghetto Goats
So far it’s a tie. We’ll have to see how long Sedona can produce milk before we call this one.
*Freshening is the goat-term that refers to how many times they’ve kidded. With each kidding their milk production increases.