lundi 14 mars 2011

Is it a girl?

This is the time of birth. The lambing is almost over but goats are giving birth every day (or night). The dilemma for everybody that keeps animals for their milk is that we need the mother animals to give birth but we don't really need the young animals. We keep a percentage of the females to renew the herd eventually. We don't keep the males. We can sell the lambs and will try to sell the little goats (wikipedia tells me that would be kids in english) although people are less used to eat goats here.
Actually we don't really want those animals. The milk they drink we want to use to make cheese. Some of them are quite weak and it takes time and effort to keep them alive. It is a cruel detail, quite a few goat farmers kill the little billies just after birth and only keep the females, even dairy farmers do this (in Britain for instance). It feels to wrong snuff something out that has just been born. The next easy option is to sell at a few weeks age to people who raise them for meat and sell them in countries where there is actually a market for them (Spain, Italy). Are those fews weeks and then life in an industrial goat farm until slaughter really better than getting killed at birth, good question. Or is a a few months on our farm until slaughter a life worth living? I do not know.