Tuesday, June 30, 2009
Life is good in the Barn.
Just did our first milking in the new barn. While the old setup worked pretty well, this is so much nicer. No more hunching over so I don't get a nail in the scalp or break a lightbulb with my head.
The only thing the old had that the new is missing is the double gates. But with the goats learning the routine, I don't see that as too much of a problem.
Twice this morning I forgot to put grain in the feed buckets before letting the next pair of goats in. As soon as they saw the bucket empty they jumped off the stands and started wandering all around and it took a few minutes to get them back up on the stands. I must remember to put the grain in each time BEFORE letting the goats in to milk. I found that if they don't jump up on the stands by themselves, if I grab their collar and lead them to the back of the stand, they would jump up by themselves. I had to do this a couple times with each goat before they realized what I was expecting them to do. I stand by the side of the goat stand so they can't sidle around and only put their front legs up in order to reach the grain. Since the stands are now raised up higher, and they don't really have a way to get around to the front, if they want the grain, they have to jump up. Most of them were pretty good about jumping up, but when I forgot the grain and they got back down, they didn't go up so nicely the second time.
Last night Lisa dropped off the bucket and most of the hoses were disconnected. I didn't think much of it until this morning when I was rinsing it out and realized that disconnecting all the milk hoses makes cleaning it so much easier. I don't know why I didn't do that before. But more to the point, Lisa, once you realized it, why didn't you let the rest of us know? So now when cleaning, we just disconnect the milk hoses from the lid and wash the lid. Then when we start cleaning the hoses (which are the real hassle) we don't worry about getting the blue pulsator all wet. We've left the air hoses still connected, but being able to put the lid off to the side while doing the hoses is much easier. Maybe tonight I'll try removing the air hoses as well. Not sure how much of a hassle that will be putting them on and off.
With all the space in the barn, I'm all for setting up a cleaning system right there. If we get some bucket heaters, we can start the water warming when we start milking and by the time the goats are done, it should be hot enough to clean the bucket. The first time I cleaned the bucket I did it that way; put a bunch of hot water in a bucket and let it suck through the hoses. It went through a 2 gallon bucket in seconds. We can run a cleaning cycle a few times and then rinse it the same way. Seems to me that it will make it much easier. It will also relieve us from having to drop the bucket off to the next person each time. Not that doing that is a problem, but it would be another step we could eliminate in all this. What do you guys think?