Sunday, 10 July 2016

Not To Everyones Taste

Yesterday it was time for the first of the goats to be slaughtered, 
 We have raised three young bucks
 At 5 months old they are a size, bigger than there mums
 One in particular has become a bit of handful over the past week
 They were not castrated,
 And we never had them de-horned, any future bucks will be castrated and de-horned,
 They spend a lot of time sparing with each other
 They have been fully weaned now for about a week, this week I had a tussle with the biggest and nearly lost an eye with one of his horns, he caught me on the forehead about an inch above my eye, this was the deciding factor it was time for him to go before he caused a real injury.
Martin did the butchery and made a grand job of it, we got 21kilos of meat in total, the buck weighed in at about 35 kilos, ideal slaughter weight is suggested at 40 kilos, so he was just under, there is a lot of meat and very little fat, the other two bucks we will keep on a bit longer, we have kept the hide its in the freezer and when we have some time we want to have a go at tanning the hides.
The males were always destined for the table, how do I feel about this, perfectly fine they have been raised well, freedom to go outside, climb, jump and play the quality of the meat shows this. They have spent 5 months feeding from there mums had a good varied diet and felt the sun on there backs when it did shine. The bucks have never been named because they were destined for meat.
I know not everyone will approve of this but that is what we raise them for. We will enjoy every meal.

44 comments:

  1. Just to say that I am fully supportive of your decision to slaughter the male goats and to get them into the freezer. We did exactly the same when we kept goats. The meat is tasty and you enjoy eating it, of that I am sure.
    We never kept the hides, so it will be interesting to see what you do with the one you kept eventually.
    AS for dehorning and castrating, we never castrate our male lambs because 1) the meat of a castrated male is never quite the same as an uncastrated male, 2) the lambs do not show any aggressive tendency which would be detrimental to the flock overall.
    Not so the male goats. We have also learnt that they can be aggressive and naughty, so we castrated ours as soon as we could. We never dehorned our goats, but by crikey I wished we had, because the aggression between flock members and also towards us became quite dangerous sometimes.
    It was with relief that we stopped keeping goats, but we did have our two Jersey house cows to take over with giving us milk.
    We never named our young goats, but did the adult females because we always thought we would keep them.
    We also gave our goats the best of life, the same as you provided for yours. It is the way of life on a smallholding, which many people do not understand. Vx

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    1. All our females have names, boys are just boys, I have often thought of having jersey cows perhaps something we might try in the future

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  2. I like goat! Hope you enjoy it.

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    1. Curried goat is on the menu for next week, my daughter is cooking it

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  3. It seems to me (a city girl) that having animals on your smallholding, for the most part, are to feed you. I have never tasted goat meat but I wouldn't have any problem eating it. I've had rabbit. elk. moose and bear so i wouldn't have a problem with goat. I've wondered what you have your alpaca for-is it just for the fleece? or will you mate and sell the offspring? Just wondering.

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    1. The Alpacas are for fleece and fertiliser they are also good guards at keeping foxes away, we only have a fox problem when the Alpacas are in paddocks away from the poultry

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  4. I also fully support you in keeping and eating your own meat :) as a meat eater, this to me would be the gold standard of consuming animal flesh. We just don't have the space to do this, except chooks ( which were doing this Aussie Spring ), so I buy from farmers who farm organically/bio dynamically and keep,and kill their animals in a good way.

    It was interesting to read how you'd keep the boys differently next time. I will make not of this for when we get our farm!

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    1. we are learning all the time and over time will improve on a lot of things

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  5. The meat will be lovely, all the better for knowing it was raised ethically and had a good and happy life. I wish we had more space to be more self sufficient, but at least we have enough room to grow sufficient fruit and veg for our needs.

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  6. That meat looks so good, I don't think I've ever tried goat though, is it a strong flavour? Looks like a good job of butchery as well.

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    1. Taste very much like lamb, Martins butchery skills are improving all the time

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  7. Although I eat very little meat precisely because, as you say, slaughtering is not to everyone's taste, I know that goat meat is nice as I had some in Southern Italy many years ago. As for yoour bucks, they have certainly had a better life than most animals destined for meat. And the decision not to name them certainly was wise and made it easier for you; they were not pets after all. I'm very interested to see what you will do with the hides too. x

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    1. Rule of thumb is if it destined for the table it never gets a name, I know from the moment they are born what they are destined for so I have a different relationship with them.

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  8. Where does meat come from, most don't get a life anywhere near to the Bucks life, anyone who objects other than their beliefs I've vegan, should open thier eyes to the country life. I'm glad to hear you are OK after your tussle with him.

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    1. Well meat comes from the supermarket in little trays and no thought has to go into its origins

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  9. Go Dawn. Hope your little injury is healing. Well done Martin, its what its all about!

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    1. My injury wasnt really anything I was more shook up over how boisterous and strong they were becoming even though I handle the every day

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  10. When we kept goats we always disbudded and castrated the male kids. They mature so early and can be quite dangerous, especially if you have children around as their horns are just the right height for a child's eye.(horns often get caught in wire fencing too) I was always told that the meat could be a little stronger from an uncastrated male, but don't know if this is true. The meat is just like lamb, but with less fat. I looked through old diaries after I stopped keeping goats and over a twenty year span we raised over forty male goats. If you are keeping goats for milk you will have at least as many male kids as female and need to give careful thought as to what to do with the kids. Smallholder friends (vegetarian) said that they couldn't raise for meat so gave the billys away. The life these billys led was not always happy as people get fed up when the little cutie becomes a smelly monster and is passed from pillar to post, often ending up at a market being sold for Halhal meat. I came to the conclusion that vegetarians couldn't really keep diary animals as they would always have the problem of male babies.
    That butchering looks very well done
    Gill

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    1. Never thought what happens with vegetarians, we have always been of the mind set if we cant raise and eat our own meat we wouldnt eat meat.

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  11. As the comments on here show, you have raised the goats and given them a good and happy life. You can't have more ethical meat than that. I bet it tastes great too. Glad you just avoided an accident, but a lesson learned and they will be disbudded and castrated in future.

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  12. Wow - Very impressive butchering!! RMan (and I) couldn't kill an animal, so we don;t keep any for meat ;)

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    1. it has always been on the cards, Martin has done hunting and knows what he is doing.

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  13. wow they're huge! what will the hides be for once they're tanned? I'd love to see a goat skin rug, though I doubt it'll be as soft as sheepskin haha xx

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    1. I have no idea what the hides will be yet will see how they turn out first

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  14. The only thing about castrating and dis budding is that it will cost a lot, making the meat more expensive, could you send them off a bit earlier?
    . Though we knew someone who got a goat horn stuck under a shoulder blade and we always avoided horned goats and Billies!!

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    1. Castrtion we can do by ringing like with lambs de-horn has to be done by the vet it dosent really cost a lot if they done really young, to get a good meat to skeleton ratio we need to raise them to at least 5/6 months ideally 8 months

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  15. I am far too squeamish to either kill or eat home raised meat but that goat sure does look beautiful.
    Looking forward to seeing the tanning process-x-

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    1. It will be a while before we do the tanning, it will be our first attempt at it

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  16. I'm happy for you to use the male kids for food. We sometimes raise chickens for meat. Are you allowed to kill the goats yourselves?

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    1. Yes we are allowed to slaughter for our own use providing it has been raised here

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  17. I'd really like to try goat, never tasted it before. You've done the right thing, a good weight of meat too. What sort of things will you cook using the meat? I always love seeing your meals! Xx

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    1. just done our first meal, we both enjoyed it

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  18. Good job on the processing! We've done our own once and since then taken them to a facility. We know we can if we have to, though. It's a big job!
    Call me when it's dinner time! LOL

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    1. Martin enjoys the butchery side of things and is happy to do it

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  19. Enjoy your meat, goat is delicious, leaner than lamb and with a better flavour. I never raised any myself but the family did and I would swap chicken and duck for the meat.

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  20. Well done, to both of you. You've done what you set out to do. Give them a life in return for their meat.

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  21. I like goat meat, especially curried.
    Full y support your descision, it is yours to make and what would be the point of raising an animal not to use it's flesh?
    You know it has had a good life.
    Enjoy!

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  22. I don't agree with commercially sourced meat, these days we eat mostly vegan due to the ethics of the meat industry. If we lived closer to you I'd happily buy meat from you as I know your animals have a better life than most humans. I'd say that I'm a happivore, I only want to eat something if it has lived a good and happy life! If an animal lives with love and respect all it's life and then has just one bad day at slaughter then I'd say that's a fair trade off for the comfort and safety you have provided them. especially since I know you will make full use of every part of the animal and not let any go to waste.

    You could probably make good money selling the skull with horns intact to pagan & goth types, I'd imagine there's quite a market for that type of thing to be used as headdresses/decoration. Do you still have the heads?

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  23. Never had goat...that I know of...but my it does look good...lucky you still have your eyes intact...scary to say the least. Does not being castrated affect the taste of the meat as it does with boars? x

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