Exciting news–yes, even more exciting than a new load of hay for the goatie-goats. (Though they may disagree; they were pretty psyched about the fresh hay!)
We are getting a Nigerian Dwarf buck. Actually, we’re getting 2 unrelated bucks — gorgeous ones from awesome bloodlines — that are going to become our herd sires going forward. I can’t even tell you how excited I am to not have to find a buck to breed to this fall! If these boys get big enough, we’ll hopefully even be able to breed them to our LaMancha does and get some mini LaManchas. (I’m eager to have our full size dairy goats in milk at last!)
Of course, before our little bucklings can come home, we needed a place to house them. During the coldest parts of the winter, they can come in one of the stalls in our barn, but we decided to build them a shed and paddock away from our does for the warmer months. Mike and I are NOT builders; the buck shed is the most crooked, goofy thing you’ll ever see. But it stays dry when it rains, and it’s situated so that it provides protection from the wind and hot sun. So even if it’s imperfect, I’m pretty proud of it!
First we started by setting posts in the ground. There are fence posts for the paddock and pressure-treated 4×4 posts for the shed itself.
Ben wasn’t home when we built most of it, but Myles got into the action and helped with the power tools a little bit.
Here’s a peek at the siding and roof going on, as well as how it is situated in proximity to the main barn. It’s close enough to easily haul hay and water buckets, but far enough to keep the eau-de-buck at bay. (The wind direction usually blows in the direction opposite the barn, toward our pasture.)
We found leftover pieces of metal siding in the attic above our barn, and repurposed it for the roofing material.
Surprisingly, it didn’t take long to put it all together!
Then we painted it with bright white exterior paint. The boys got in the action on this one, and did a great job!
Myles got into painting… literally. Almost a week later and I’m still trying to get the paint out of his hair. I guess that’s what happens when you’re in charge of the lowest third of the wall and bigger people are painting the upper part above you – ha!
And here it is, in all its wonky glory! (Actually, we put another coat of paint on it after this, but you get the idea.) I’m really happy with how it came together, and it was a really fun project because the entire family got to work together on it. Now we just need to finish fencing the paddock and hang a hay rack, mineral feeder, and water bucket, and we’ll be ready to go get our new boys. (More on that soon!)