It’s hotter than a billy goat in a pepper patch!

tumblr_mbv62cYnst1qa944oo1_1280In the Southern United States, it gets Hot…Really hot!  Many times we reach 100+ degrees with ease in July and August.  Rain is always a blessing as it cools things off even if only temporarily, otherwise it’s just stinking hot!

I hear a question about how to care for goats when it’s so hot the trees are arguing over who gets the dog.  Well this is what we do.

First and foremost, make sure your goats have plenty of fresh water available to them.  Goats have a reputation for being able to go without water for a few days and have remarkable ways of conserving water in their bodies.  From their blood vessels in their ears to panting and even sweating (hopefully it is never that bad).  However as goat tenders there is no reason they shouldn’t have fresh water every day, especially when it’s hot.  It only takes a few minutes each day to fill buckets.

Shelter would be the next thing, plenty of shade, whether it’s from trees or manmade shelter, they need a place to get out of the sun.  Our tend to find a “sandy” spot under a shade tree and hang out.  Another thing to do in shade is provide fans.  We provide fans in our barn to keep the air flowing, it aids in providing a shaded place for them to hang out and a gentle breeze as well.  If you notice in the heat, they will go out in the morning and come in after a few hours and lounge around while it’s hot and then go out again later as it cools.

And finally we trim our goats. Yep, we give them haircuts.  For most people who show their goats, they trim them regularly anyway.  We trim ours in the summer between show seasons to help keep them cool.  There are two drawbacks that you need to watch out for when trimming.  The first it to remember goats can get sunburn and not to trim too short because of this and second as they are trimmed it’s easier for biting flies and other flying pest to get to their skin.  So it’s a good idea to keep them coated with fly spray as well.

That’s how we do it.  How do you manage your goats in the summer heat?  Let us know in the comments and thanks for reading!



Ducks, yes that’s right little itty bitty ducklings at Camelot Hills.  I know it’s a Baa-log but hey, we are still a farm.

So a close friend of ours over at J & J Acres had some Muscovy Ducks (some call them Scoobies) for sale and we just had to buy a few, five to be exact.  We have never raised ducks before, we’ve had chickens for many years, but never ducks.

Why ducks now?  Well, why do we do anything on a farm?  In our case, these ducklings will grow into pets and possibly producers for the eggs and possible sale in the future thus providing our farm with a little more income to pay for the things any farm needs…more goats, and feed and hay and more goats!  Why Muskovies?  Well it’s what Jared and Jennifer had and we’ve heard great things about them.  They eat loads of bugs like flies and mosquitoes…something we have plenty of in Mississippi.  They are also ‘quiet’ ducks.  So they shouldn’t make too much noise.  They also are claimed to “stay home” rather than fly away.  As we have ducklings, these things will just have to be proven to us over time but I trust they will be true to their reputation.

Did I mention I know a LOT about chickens?  Well some used to call me the chicken man…now I’m working on the title Goat Whisperer.  How hard could raising ducks be?  They are still poultry right?  Yep.  But they behave quite differently than young chicks.

To be honest, so far they haven’t been any more trouble than chicks but they do have some very interesting differences.  For instance, when we take chicks from their brooder to clean it, chicks would usually go in all different directions exploring.  The ducklings however tend to stay very close together and follow one particular lead duck around.  You would never see a young chick doing this unless the lead chick had food.   The ducklings seem to always be together and quite frequently they are all “in a row”.  Sometimes a side by side row, other times a one behind the other row.

Today we gave them a little mini pond in their brooder and they just went nuts…it’s was like when you give goats something new to climb on…they just were all about it.  Splashing and playing.  We can’t wait to get them into their new outdoor enclosure so they have more room to run and splash.

They are a welcome addition to our farm and we are looking forward to haven them around to help us keep an eye on things.  And maybe, just maybe they’ll make some goat friends while they are here.

We’ll keep you updated on how they are doing and anything new we learn with them just as we try to do with the goats.

Until next time, may your udders be full and your kids and ducklings plenty.



Disclaimer:  this was written a couple months ago and I’m just getting it uploaded.  The ducks are now full grown and doing well.  We’ll right a new blog on them later.  Thanks for reading!



First Disbudding (de-horning)

Well today we disbudded our first kid.  In all the things we do around the farm this is probably the most emotionally disturbing thing I can imagine and least favorite thing to do.  It didn’t seem to bother the young kid much at all.  She yelled a little but it was over pretty quickly, then she went on her way and seemed to be just fine with the occasional scratch to her head with her rear hoof.  I, on the other hand was a bit more bothered simply because this was something new to me and was more worried about her than she was bothered by it, but I’m a big buck and will get over it.

Disbudding is a necessary evil Continue reading

4H South Mississippi District Livestock Show

Awards_District  In order to advance to Dixie National Rodeo and Livestock Junior Roundup (Mississippi’s State 4H show), you must compete in the County and District shows and receive a Blue Ribbon.  If you receive a Red ribbon, then your animal cannot proceed to the next show.  The ribbons are less about placement and more about normality.  Very few red ribbons are given out as the reasons they are given are because of birth defects or other problems with the animal such as a sick goat, one that is lame, or some other visible defect.

This is the story of the District show.  At the district show we were required to check our goats in the day before the show on Friday, so we got there early and settled in for the night, all was well.  The weather was good considering it is winter time here in Mississippi.  Saturday morning was like any other show, Continue reading

Lauderdale County 4H Livestock Show

DSC_0780Well the first goat show of the 4H season is in the books!

The day started out great with decent weather, hovering around 50 degrees and a few sprinkles, we bundled up, loaded up the goats, over the hills and through the woods and around a detour, we finally made it to the Livestock Arena.

Last year we were at this same show, showing pigs (read the about us to find out more about this).  During that show the number of animals and people were more than double than that of this year.  Not sure why that was today but it still happened and that was good.

We had a small amount of competition today as the numbers were lower, however the numbers were in our favor as we had more goats than anyone else.  In our state, we can only bring 6 does to competition, so we did bring six!

So onto the show Continue reading

It’s cold, must be 4H Show time!

Marlena CoatThe 4H shows are kicking off in about 2 weeks for us.  The ladies of the farm have been working hard on getting the does prepared for their days of glory.  We have three weeks back to back to back of shows.  Starting with the county show and then onto the regionals and then “The Big Show”, the Dixie National Rodeo 4H Livestock Show in Jackson MS.  We’ve never been to Dixie before so we’re really excited.

So along with their regularly monthly grooming, the ladies have given the does their first trimming.  We decided as it’s been SO cold lately that we will not give them a complete shaving for the show, just get them trimmed so they look nice.  No need to put them through too much stress of freezing just for show.   They’ll have their new coats to wear, along with their sweaters if need be to keep them warm, but still I wouldn’t want to be bald in the winter either.  The doe pictured is Marlena, she’s wearing a coat designed and made by Jenny on the farm.  Marlena isn’t much of a cold weather goat.

Still some final finishing touches, trimming and bathing will need to be done before show, but most of the work is done long before this point, such as their feeding and normal care regime.  We carefully select what each doe gets to eat based on their individual needs, not only to get them ready for show but for a happy healthy life as well.  Just as we do for ourselves.

So stay warm out there and we’ll see you after show season with updates on how things went.  We hope for the best and wish all of you showing your goats good luck!

If you haven’t already, come check out our YouTube channel and see what we’ve got going on.


One Old Cold Goat

2014-A year in Review

Goodbye 2014, a year in review.

Camelot Hills CarriageWow, what a year for Camelot Hills.  This year we began raising dairy goats and gave our farm a name because of it as the ADGA (American Dairy Goat Association) requires it, and we couldn’t be any more happy about it.  What started out as a simple 4H project with just a couple goats has turned into 6 dairy does (Alpine and Nubian), 2 herd sires (Nubian) with many on the way this spring.  Camelot Hills has become more than just a project, it has expanded our lives in ways we could have never imagined.

We acquired our first two dairy goats from Joburg Acres, a local 4H’r, and they happen to be bucks.  Then the plan to get a single Senior doe from Heaven’s Jubilee farm in Starkville, MS turned into getting the Senior Doe and her 4 month old kid as well.  These were Ain’t I Something Mister and Melody.  We were going to just get a doe simply so we could learn about how to care for and milk a senior doe first.  However Continue reading

Goat Rules! What every Farmer should know.

10 Rules goats live by.

  1. Jump…on and off Everything and even Nothing!
  2. Eat….everything, that tastes good!
  3. Climb!
  4. Nibble!… on anything and everything…especially the farmer’s stuff!
  5. Drop goat berries anywhere, anytime…farmers love that!
  6. Play!
  7. Whenever possible, sneak into the feed room, you never know what you will find!
  8. Headbutt!
  9. Love on your farmers…especially when they don’t know they need it!
  10. Smile!


5 Special rules for Bucks!

  1. Bleat
  2. Snort
  3. Hump
  4. Butt
  5. Repeat
  6. Laughing-goat

Herd Sires are unhappy!

MerlinAll Does are Bred and this fella pictured to the left ain’t none to happy!

Well, all the ones we intend to breed at least.  Lady (She’s A Lady) wasn’t bred as we thought it was best to hold her over until next season as she’s a bit small, however she’s starting to catch up with the others and is turning out to be one fine doe!   She’ll do well in the juniors I’m sure. Seems everyone took so we should be having a busy kidding season in spring 2015.  So here’s a quick rundown of who’s bred to whom.

In the Alpines, we have Marlena and Monica who were bred with Barnibus from Sweet Chariot Farms.   Then we have Queen (I’m a Beauty Queen) with whom we bred with our own Nubian Merlin.  Her kids will be ADGA registered as Recorded Grade.

In the Nubians, we have Misty (Ain’t I Something Mister) bred to Merlin.  Then we have Melody (Misty’s daughter) bred to Arthur.  I can’t wait to see which one of these two bucks produce the better kids.  To my novice eye Merlin is the better buck but they are twins!  It is Merlin and Arthur’s first breeding season as well.  So we’re really excited to see what they all produce.  All the expected kids will/can be registered with ADGA.

Expected due dates are:

Monica:  2/13/2015

Marlena:  3/2/2015

Queen:  4/2/15

Mister:  4/8/2015

Melody: 4/8/2015


It’s like waiting for Christmas!


Barnibus herd sire from Sweet Chariot Farms




Protecting your goats from Old Man Winter

camelot hills logo blackHere at Camelot Hills in east central Mississippi, our winters are not all that harsh.  However, they can get quite cold at times with the occasional freezing rain, sleet and the crippling one inch of snow.   I kid simply because the South is just not prepared for snow and it usually shuts everything down for a day or two.  Old Man Winter can  be a nasty ole goat at times and some goats need a little help fighting him off.

There are many ways to protect your goats for the winter weather, the first being shelter.  Shelter can be very small to very large, depending on your needs and means.  But whatever its size, it needs to be clean and dry.  I have seen shelters take on all sizes and shapes made from many different materials such as hay, pallets and old scrap tin.  You can also re-purpose other buildings for shelter, we took a storage shed and turned it into a pig barn, which later remodeled for a goat shelter.   Some people even use part of their garage.  And to get even crazier, some people bring their goats indoors.  I’ve even seen pictures on the internet of shelters made from stacks of hay with a board on top, talk about simple.  Do yourself a quick search and see what you might like. The most important thing is that it’s clean and dry. Continue reading