Grain ??

Discussion in 'Dairy Goat Info' started by laughter777, Jul 17, 2008.

  1. laughter777

    laughter777 New Member

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    I am just all full of questions today...not sure if I am just realizing there is so much more I need to learn (and am hoping to cram it into the next few days before my new girls get here) or if it is that I know there is the Off Topic section that I can't see and want more posts to view it! lol maybe both!!
    Ok so my question:

    I am now feeding:
    Alfalfa Pellets (need to get amount help on that...not sure)
    Free choice grass hay
    Free choice tech master mineral
    and grain (now only on milk stand)

    I know the need for mineral and forage and alfalfa especially for milk, but other than keeping them happy on the stand what is the need for grain???

    Now the Alfalfa problem...the scoop I use to feed...I just weighed it this morning (got a scale last night) is 2.5 lbs per full scoop. I was giving her a full scoop AM and a full scoop pm, but I thought it was too much so I cut down to half and half...so instead of 5 lbs a day it is like 2.5 a day....I still think that may be too much. She is a 3rd gen Mini Mancha weighs 65lbs (wait...180-115=65 correct)...I think I read on a board after posting what I feed (free choice pellets) that a fullsize should get 3lbs a day...she is not fullsize.

    HELP!!!!!

    Thanks in advance!
    Sarah
     
  2. homeacremom

    homeacremom New Member

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    I feed alfalfa pellets (and hay) free choice, but have standard size goats. Amazed that she ( a mini) is cleaning up 5 lbs. a day! Don't know much about minis... Now at first they will eat more - perhaps to make up for any deficiencies in the past. Mine took several months to even out but are close to 2-3 lbs a day.
    As for grain I use as little as needed to get top production and good condition. My does get anywhere from 1-4 lbs per milking and are in milk basically up to the last month of pregnancy. I just pay attention to each goat. Grain here means a combo of oats, black oil sunflower seed, and a little non GMO corn- what you use makes a difference. Grain gives extra "energy" to support heavy milk production, keep working does in condition, recondition bucks after rut, and to balance out the alfalfa for super growth in doelings.
    Technically, if you are feeding quality alfalfa pellets along with grass hay you shouldn't need grain. It depends on what your goals are and how hard you expect your goats to work. With prices rising I know many have rethought their feeding plans so will be interested in the other responses you get.
     

  3. NubianSoaps.com

    NubianSoaps.com New Member

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    My mini's are getting 1 pound of alfalfa pellets morning and night and a tuna fish can of grain (oats, a little corn and alfalfa pellet) this is mixed for a horse farm and is still cheaper than whole oats, when it is not I will be going back to whole oats. They get their mineral, hay and pasture. They look wonderful. Sure they want more, but they certainly don't need more.

    Are the goats you are getting Tuesday also mini's? Vicki
     
  4. laughter777

    laughter777 New Member

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    The ones I am getting Tues are full size (one PB Lamancha and one LM Nubian)
     
  5. NubianSoaps.com

    NubianSoaps.com New Member

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    Than they will need to be moved to eating similar to how you were feeding the mini. One of your scoops really full of alfalfa pellets a day, and 1 to 3 pounds of grain on the milkstand at each milking, depending upon how well they are milking.

    Just follow the instruction they come with they look great at their old home, then slowly move them to your grain mix and how you want to do things. Everyday until you get the hang of this pet your goats over their ribs. Your goal is to feel ribs with just the smallest amount of flesh over them...they should never be ribs and just skin, or ribs and a roll of fat :) This is the best way to keep your goats in excellent condition, alot of people look at big barrelled goats and think the goat is fat, when it is a good soild deep bodied doe, or they look over the top line and think their goats are thin. Vicki
     
  6. laughter777

    laughter777 New Member

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    I just went out to measure Lily (the breeders are going to register her for me) and ran my hands over her ribs...ribs with a little flesh. I always look at her and think she is fat (big belly) or that she is thin (boney back and hips) I am sooo used to my horses, but I do keep them a little fatter than most people I know. And my donkey is obese, but she gets fed NOTHING and I can't get the weight off her.

    Sarah
     
  7. laughter777

    laughter777 New Member

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    So I relooked over my feed and what I typed. As far as the Alfalfa Pellets...I had been giving her a full cup (red plastic cup) am and a full pm. That day I didn't have a plastic cup so I filled it, then red flag went off...much larger than plastic cup! The plastic cup full of Alfalfa is 1lb so she gets 1lb am and 1lb pm. I did not feed the full 2.5lb scoop, I don't know what my brain was thinking when I typed that! Anyways I now keep 2 red cups in the alfalfa tub in case I forget to put on back. If I happen to measure with a different scoop then I will bring the scale out!
    So my feeding schedule is:
    Mineral Free Choice
    1lb alfalfa am
    milk her w/ grain on "stand"
    1lb alfalfa pm


    Should I just put 2lbs out in the am or is it ok to split it this way???

    Is 2lbs still too much for a mini mancha. She produces 3/4 a quart a day. I am about to go back to milking 2 to 3 times a day, she was producing between 2-3 cups am and 1-2 cups pm (so between 3-5 cups or around a quart) she kidded in Feb with 1 buckling, (not sure if breeder or next owner had her when she kidded) then she was bought by the lady I bought her from and nursed between 4 and 6 kids. Should I be getting 3/4 cup out of 5 months fresh 1st freshening mini mancha doe?

    Sarah
     
  8. Sondra

    Sondra New Member

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    Not sure what your asking here. If I was only getting 3/4 cup per milking from a MM doe I would be very very sad.
    What generation is this doe ??
    I am one that keeps my MM in with my FB so every one gets at least 3 lb of alfalfa pellets per day per goat, and if I have it they get alfalfa pellets free choice. I am not going to skimp on my alfalfa pellets if at all possible this is why I sold out of most of my goats. I feed whole oats/barley/BOSS/beet pulp/cracked corn. for thier grain and they get 1 scoop (3 cup scoop) per milking I don't feed alfalfa pellets on the stand.

    Now I know that some of the mini's don't get thier full share because the FB are the queens but for the most part everyone gets at least 3lbs AP per day.

    Most MM will milk at least 1 qt per day and if your not getting at least that even from a FF then something is a miss I think
     
  9. laughter777

    laughter777 New Member

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    I meant 3/4 quart not cup...whoops! She is 3rd generation. I was getting a little under or a little over a quart when I first got her. Didn't have the right grain, alfalfa, or minerals for her at the time (didn't plan to get a goat!) I now have Alfalfa Pellets, Oats w/ BOSS, and Tech Master Mineral for her. I was milking her 2x a day, but have gone to 1 time a day...I think that is why her production has gone down. I moved from 2 x/day to 1x before I found this valuable site and all its knowledge.

    If my milking 1x a day has caused her to go from around 1qt a day to 3/4qt is there a way to get it back up, or is this not a big amount to worry about. Could it be a decline due to the fact that she freshened 5 months ago???

    Thanks,
    Sarah
     
  10. NubianSoaps.com

    NubianSoaps.com New Member

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    The Findleys milk their mini-mancha's for a living so I would say she should be a good milker. They aren't posting yet, Goater's but they are members. I think it's amazing with all the moving this doe did that she is milking that much, you should be very very happy! Vicki
     
  11. laughter777

    laughter777 New Member

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    Ok. I wasn't sure if the production was normal or not!
     
  12. Sondra

    Sondra New Member

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    That is probably normal for once a day milking and her moving. Next year with she will be back up in production. She might go back up by milking twice a day again but don't count on it this year. Vicki is right the Findleys have some excellent milkers.